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Coronavirus: China bans funerals for coronavirus victims

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By IANS Updated: Feb 02, 2020 10:59 pm
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A photo released on Feb. 1 by China’s Xinhua News Agency, shows construction workers at the site of the Huoshenshan temporary field hospital being built in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei Province.

Beijing, Feb. 2 (IANS): China on Sunday banned funerals, burials and farewell ceremonies for the victims of the novel coronavirus in an effort to control the outbreak as the death toll rose to 304 in the country.

The bodies should be cremated at designated funeral homes near their location, they cannot be transported between regions and cannot be preserved by burial or other means, said the trial guidelines issued by the National Health Commission, the Ministry of Civil Affairs and the Ministry of Public Security.

Funeral traditions such as farewell ceremonies are prohibited and bodies must be disinfected and placed by medical workers into a sealed bag, which thereafter cannot be opened, reports Efe news.

Funeral homes must also send personnel and special vehicles to deliver the bodies according to the designated route, the guidelines said.

China also reported an outbreak of the deadly H5N1 bird flu in Hunan province, which lies on the southern border of Hubei province.

“The outbreak occurred in a farm in the Shuangqing district of Shaoyang city. The farm has 7,850 chickens, and 4,500 of the chickens have died from the contagion. Local authorities have culled 17,828 poultry after the outbreak,” a statement by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said on Saturday.

No human cases of the Hunan H5N1 virus have been reported, the Post reported.

The bird flu is highly deadly to humans who contract it, with a mortality rate of more than 50 per cent in cases over the last 15 years.

China also geared up to open the makeshift 1,000 bed hospital built in Wuhan in record nine days. Another 2,300 bed hospital is getting ready in few days.

President Xi Jinping has ordered 1,400 medical staff from the armed forces to treat patients in the newly-built Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan starting from Monday.

UAE confirms 5th coronavirus case
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has confirmed its fifth case of the novel coronavirus in a man from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicentre of the deadly outbreak.

The fifth patient is a Chinese national who travelled to the UAE from Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, Hussain Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for Health Centres and Clinics, told Gulf News on Saturday.

The person is currently receiving the necessary treatment, and his health condition is stable and under observation, the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) announced on Saturday night.

The ministry noted that the previous four cases registered involving a Chinese family, as previously announced, were still receiving the necessary treatment.

“Their general condition is stable, and there is no cause for concern about them,” according to a MOHAP statement.

As of Sunday, the death toll due to the coronavirus outbreak was 304 in China, with 14,380 infected cases.

The Philippines confirmed one death, making it the first country outside China to report a fatality.

Outside of China, the countries that have confirmed coronavirus cases are Thailand, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Macao, Taiwan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, the US, Germany, France, Vietnam, Canada, Italy, the UK, Russia, Cambodia, Finland, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Spain and Sweden.

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By IANS Updated: Feb 02, 2020 10:59:11 pm