Singapore bans travellers who visited mainland China to stop spread of Coronavirus

The decision comes after the country has confirmed 16 cases of coronavirus infection, all in Chinese nationals from Wuhan

Singapore's Ministry of Health issued an order barring travellers who recently visited mainland China, out of growing concern over the spread of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

Six new cases were reported in Singapore on January 30, bringing the total number of cases to 16. All the patients tested positive for novel coronavirus are Chinese nationals, who had travelled from Wuhan, according to the Ministry of Health.

Singapore bans travellers who recently visited mainland China

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The people who have been banned include non-Chinese foreign nationals who visited China in the past 14 days, Strait Times reported. The new measures will kick in at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, February 1.

Though, Singaporean citizens and residents, who had recently visited China, will be allowed to enter in the country but will be subject to a 14-day leave of absence during which they are encouraged to stay at home.

"This will enable us to limit the number of new imported cases here and reduce risk of community spread in Singapore", Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong said in a press conference, on Friday. "The situation remains fluid, it's constantly changing, and we do not rule out taking further measures", he further added.

WHO declared PHEIC

On Thursday, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared coronavirus outbreak-a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC). Death toll attributed to the virus outbreak has reached 213, with 10,000 cases reported-mostly from China's Hubei province. The first case was reported on December 31 in Chinese city Wuhan, capital of its Hubei province.

About 100 cases have been reported from over 20 countries, with Italy and the UK reporting the latest cases. Countries such as Japan, South Korea, United States and France have evacuated their citizens out of Wuhan, with countries such as UK, New Zealand, Australia and India, in the process to do the same.

Related topics : Coronavirus