COVID-19 briefing: Case confirmed at King’s

King’s College London has told staff and students that a member of its “community” has tested positive for COVID-19, also known as coronavirus.

According to Roar News, an email sent to staff and students reads: “Public Health England (PHE) has informed us of a recently confirmed case within our community. We understand this development will be a cause for concern and we want to reassure all of you that we are working closely with PHE and NHS services.”

The email continues: “PHE has advised that the risk to our staff, students and visitors remains low and the university remains open.

“Our community is truly and proudly international, with staff and students from over 150 countries. We are committed to providing an environment in which all of our students, staff and community members feel welcome, supported and safe. As such, it remains important that we continue to work together and support each other.”

The College says that the Students’ Union and ‘Big White Wall‘ can provide students with welfare support and advice.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson meets ten staff members around a coffee table at the Royal Free Hospital, Hampstead.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead, where a high-level isolation unit has been set up to deal with COVID-19.
Credit: Royal Free Hospital.

87 coronavirus cases across the UK

PHE says that there are almost 90 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, but more than 16,600 tests have taken place. The vast majority of these tests showed negative results.

Media outlets based in London are reporting that several cases have emerged in the capital.

The Evening Standard reported yesterday that two patients at the King’s College Hospital, Denmark Hill, have tested positive for coronavirus. In a statement, the hospital said that there are “strict protocols in place to manage the control of infection and to reduce the possibility of cross-infection.” This includes restricting staff and visitor access to the affected ward.

Also in South London, a school in Wimbledon is closed until March 11 after a member of staff tested positive for the virus. It is thought that the member of staff contracted the virus overseas. Staff members who have been in contact with the victim are self-isolating over this period.

North of the Thames, in the City of London, Deloitte UK confirmed that one of its employees has contracted coronavirus after a “personal trip to Asia.” A floor of the firm’s 1 New Street Square office was closed for deep cleaning yesterday. Deloitte said that PHE did not recommend cancelling events, meetings, nor closing any of its offices, City A.M. reported.

The UK Chief Medical Officers advise that the UK risk for the virus is moderate. Currently, PHE emphasises that the best way to combat the virus is to wash hands for 20 seconds using soap and water, or hand sanitiser.

PHE says that anyone who may have contracted the virus should avoid GPs, pharmacies, and hospitals. Instead, you may use the 111 online coronavirus service to assess your risk.

Will is London Student's Features Editor. He has recently completed a BA History at SOAS, and you might find him hiding in a library around Bloomsbury.

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