Novel coronavirus: update on cases- 13th May 2013


WHO has been informed by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health in France of an additional laboratory-confirmed case with infection of the novel coronavirus (NCoV).

This patient was identified as part of the epidemiological investigation initiated by the French authorities, following laboratory confirmation of the first case on May 7th 2013. The patient shared a hospital room in Valenciennes with the first laboratory-confirmed patient from 27 to 29 April 2013. The patient is currently hospitalised and isolated in an infectious disease hospital.

Of 120 persons identified as contacts of the first laboratory-confirmed case in France, laboratory tests were conducted by Pasteur Institute in Paris on five suspected cases, of whom four tested negative, one (mentioned above) tested positive.

In Saudi Arabia, an investigation is ongoing into an outbreak in a health care facility, where 15 patients, including seven deaths have been confirmed.

From September 2012 to May 8th 2013, WHO has been informed of a global total of 34 laboratory confirmed cases of human infection with nCoV, including 18 deaths.

Based on the current situation and available information, WHO encourages all Member States to continue their surveillance for severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) and to carefully review any unusual patterns. Testing for NCoV should be considered in patients with unexplained pneumonias, or in patients with unexplained severe, progressive illness or complicated respiratory illness not responding to treatment, particularly in persons travelling from or resident in areas of the world known to be affected.

Specimens from patients’ lower respiratory tracts should be obtained for diagnosis where possible. Clinicians are reminded that nCoV infection should be considered even with atypical signs and symptoms in patients who are significantly immunocompromised.

Any clusters of SARI or SARI in healthcare workers should be thoroughly investigated, regardless of where in the world they occur.

New cases and clusters of NCoV should be promptly reported to local Departments of Public Health.

WHO does not advise special screening at points of entry with regard to this event nor does it recommend that any travel or trade restrictions be applied.

WHO continues to monitor the situation closely.

For more information see

See also:
Health Protection Agency, UK

World Health Organization

World Health Organization - Europe

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control