It's now in Canada

26 Jan 2020 | Canada | 98 |
It's now in Canada

The first case of coronavirus has now been confirmed in Canada and it's right here in Toronto.

Ontario's Chief Medical Officer, Dr. David Williams, made the announcement late this afternoon revealing that a patient with a fever and respiratory symptoms is now in isolation at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.

The patient was brought to the hospital by fully-protected paramedics on Thursday but lab results weren't confirmed until today by the Public Health Ontario Laboratory.

The man affected with the coronavirus is said to be 50-years old and in stable condition. He returned on Wednesday, January 22 from Wuhan, a Chinese city of 11 million that is currently under quarantine by the Chinese government.

According to reports, the man arrived at Pearson Airport and traveled directly to his Toronto residence via a private vehicle.

Toronto Public Health is apparently working to identify any individuals the man may have been in contact with and is also monitoring members of the man's household who are said to be in self-isolation.

Officials say they don't believe the man has taken public transit since his return from Wuhan. They have also not released any information on where in the city the man lives.

While this marks the first known case of coronavirus in Canada, cases have been reported in 16 countries including the United States and Australia.

So far almost 2,000 cases have been confirmed in China leading to 55 deaths. 237 patients are said to be in serious condition.

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Coronavirus symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing. The City of Toronto has published an explainer on their web site with additional information. 

View image on Twitter

There is currently no vaccine available to prevent coronavirus so taking preventative measures are crucial.

This includes wearing N95 face masks which are currently flying off the shelves in Toronto. Retailers and pharmacies are reporting to have sold massive quantities of the masks in recent days leaving them with no inventory.

The news of the confirmed case of coronavirus has already led to widespread reaction, particularly on Twitter, where some are trying to calm the nerves of their fellow citizens.

The Ontario government says it plans to update this dedicated web page daily with the most up-to-date information.