Trump administration declares health emergency over coronavirus


Azar said the president took "decisive action" to minimize the spread of the virus in the USA and that the "prudent, targeted and temporary" actions will reduce pressure on public health officials screening incoming travelers and ensure that resources are focused on the health and safety of Americans.

Many nations have put on charter flights to repatriate citizens from China and then place them in isolation for around two weeks, the incubation period of the virus.

The number of infections in China also rose, by 2,102, bringing the nationwide total to 11,791. The World Health Organization has declared the disease a global emergency.

So far, there are 12 cases of human-to-human transmission outside China, and Redfield said they are most concerned with "expansion of sustained community human-to-human transmission", such as the type occurring inside China. Both are Chinese citizens, "she said". The last case involved a person who was evaluated for smallpox in the 1960s.

The ban on US entry of foreign nationals who have traveled to China during the past 14 days would exempt immediate family of USA citizens and permanent USA residents, Azar said.

The Australian government on Saturday increased border restrictions for travelers from the Chinese mainland amid fears over the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus, following similar travel restrictions imposed by the US the previous day.

Tedros said travel and trade restrictions involving China were unnecessary, but authorities and businesses around the world have been taking matters into their own hands. "[It is] certainly not a gesture of goodwill".

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In Geneva, WHO Secretary-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that, despite the health emergency declaration, there was "no reason for measures that unnecessarily interfere with worldwide travel and trade".

Delta said it would wait until February 6 to stop flights and keep them suspended through April 30.

It spread globally on the wings of a Lunar New Year holiday rush that sees hundreds of millions of Chinese people travel domestically and overseas.

Indonesia will evacuate 245 of its nationals living in Wuhan and other towns in Hubei province, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said. The lockdown has spread to surrounding cities. Elsewhere in China, authorities have placed restrictions on travel and business activity in a bid to contain the spread of the virus.

In Japan, three more returnees from Wuhan have tested positive for the virus, the health ministry said.

The party decision "highlighted the importance of prevention and control of the epidemic among travelers", Xinhua said. Those returning from Hubei province will be subject to a 14-day quarantine. "Commercial carriers have reduced or suspended routes to and from China", the Department of State said on its website.

USA health officials Friday issued a two-week quarantine order for 195 Americans evacuated earlier this week from Wuhan, the Chinese city at the center of the outbreak.

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Officials stressed that this is not a "travel ban", as all USA carriers to China have been taking down passenger flights, such that it has been a "market response by airlines and voluntary decisions taken by travelers". Japan and Germany also advised against non-essential travel to China and Britain did as well, except for Hong Kong and Macao.

The national carrier Vietnam Airlines and the budget airline Jetstar Pacific said they would stop flying to mainland China as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan. The military transport plane had to divert to Helsinki before it landed in Frankfurt.

County health officials have issued a quarantine order for one of the passengers who tried to leave the base the day prior, according to a statement.

The virus has spread to about 20 other countries and areas, including six reported cases in the United States. The UK, US, Russia and Germany have all confirmed cases in recent days. Four friends who were hospitalized with him have not shown symptoms.

Abe also said the designation of the new virus as a special infectious disease will take effect Saturday, a week earlier than planned.

China's National Health Commission said in its daily report on Saturday that 1,795 patients were in critical condition.

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