There has been a significant increase in the number of cases of the recent Coronavirus outbreak and we wanted to provide an update to ensure the community remains safe at this time. Please share this information with your families, relatives and friends.

The upper respiratory infection affecting China at present is extremely serious. The virus causing it is very potent and is resistant to existing antibiotics (it’s a virus not a bacterial infection – hence it cannot be treated by antibiotics). As of January 30, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases around the world had reached more than 7000 with a death toll of 170.

It is one of a group of viruses that can affect humans – a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome. The coronavirus can travel through animals and humans and occurs when the virus gets in the cells that lay at the back of the nose – this can travel through air or touch.

The virus can mirror the symptoms of a common cold or viruses such as SARS and MERS. The virus is highly contagious, and children are especially prone to this so please take steps to protect yourself and others from getting sick.

The symptoms include:

• Repeated high fever.

• Prolonged coughing after fever.

• Adults usually feel uneasy, headache and mainly respiratory related illness.

In order to reduce exposure, we recommend following:

• Keep your throat moist, do not let your throat dry up. Do not hold your thirst because once your membrane in your throat is dried, the virus will invade into your body within 10 mins. Drink 50-80cc warm water, 30-50cc for kids, according to age.

• Avoid fried or spicy food and load up with vitamin C.

• Wear masks as needed in crowded places or on public transportation.

• Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

• When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose– throw tissue away immediately and wash hands.

• Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough.

• If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider.

• If and when visiting areas currently experiencing cases of novel coronavirus, avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals.

• The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is closely monitoring the outbreak, which was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Chinese authorities identified more than a thousand confirmed cases in China, including cases outside Wuhan City. Additional cases have been identified in a growing number of other international locations, including the United States, Canada and Australia.

There are ongoing investigations so we will continue to wait and hope for further information about the virus and provide updates were necessary.

Update provided by: The Security Centre Limited

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