A team of eminent doctors published a report in Friday’s edition of The Lancet medical journal which found that persons may be infected with the China coronavirus without presenting any symptoms.
Such patients were described in the report as ‘afebrile’, a medical term indicating no fever or outward signs of sickness. The authors of the report indicated such carriers may help to spread the outbreak by remaining undetected.
The findings of the study cast doubt on the effectiveness of screenings procedures implemented at airports around the world to prevent the spread of the disease.
Authorities around the globe, including in the United States and many Asian countries, have stepped up screening of travelers from Wuhan, China, as the outbreak of a new coronavirus spreads to more cities https://t.co/odS72zyTXs pic.twitter.com/qLutjPXCFe
— Reuters (@Reuters) January 20, 2020
The patients in the study contracted coronavirus via person-to-person transmission, and had no contact with the meat market believed to be the origin of the virus. The six family members had traveled to Wuhan from Shenzhen in mid-January.
According to her parents one of the patients, a seven-year-old girl, was wearing a surgical mask for the duration of their trip to Wuhan. This confirms reports by immunologists familiar with the current coronavirus outbreak from Wuhan that this pathogen is particularly small and can even cause infection by entering through the eyes. Authorities are now recommending protective eyewear and hospital grade fitted surgical masks to avoid infection.
These troubling new developments come as Australia has now declared four confirmed cases of China coronavirus in the country, as the number of infected globally rises rapidly.