Threat Assessment Brief: Pneumonia cases possibly associated with a novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China
On 31 December 2019, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission reported a cluster of 27 pneumonia cases, including seven severe cases, with a common reported link to Wuhan’s South China Seafood City market.
Between 31 December 2019 and 5 January 2020, 59 pneumonia cases possibly associated with a novel coronavirus have been reported in Wuhan, China with a common exposure link to Wuhan’s South China Seafood City market.
The cases showed symptoms such as fever, dyspnoea, and radiological tests compatible with bilateral lung infiltrative lesions. Seven severe cases have been reported, but no deaths. No cases have been reported outside of Wuhan. According to Chinese authorities, no human-to-human transmission could be documented.
Epidemiological investigations including contact tracing activities are ongoing and hygiene- and environmental sanitation activities in the affected market have been carried out in Wuhan.
Three EU airports have direct flight connections to Wuhan and there are indirect flight connections to other EU hubs. Considering there is no indication of human-to-human transmission and no cases detected outside of China, the likelihood of introduction to the EU is considered to be low, but cannot be excluded. However, more epidemiological and laboratory information is needed in order to elaborate a comprehensive assessment of this event and the possible risk for the international spread.
ECDC is monitoring this event through epidemic intelligence activities. For options for response and safety precautions, see ECDC’s threat assessment.