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Coronavirus: latest Information from Public Health England 

Posted by school: 28th February, 2020

What are the signs and symptoms of this new virus?

The symptoms of this new coronavirus (now known as COVID-19) include fever and respiratory symptoms including coughing, sneezing, and shortness of breath. The current evidence is that most cases appear to be mild.

If you have returned from these specific areas since February 19, you should call NHS 111 and stay indoors and avoid contact with other people even if you do not have symptoms:

If you have returned from these areas since February 19th and develop symptoms, however mild, you should stay indoors at home and avoid contact with other people immediately and call NHS 111:

  • Northern Italy (defined as North of Pisa but not including Pisa, Florence and Rimini)
  • Vietnam
  • Cambodia
  • Laos
  • Myanmar

If you have a cough, or fever or shortness of breath and have visited any of the following areas in the last 14 days

  • China
  • Thailand
  • Japan
  • Republic of Korea
  • Hong Kong
  • Taiwan
  • Singapore
  • Malaysia
  • Macau

Stay indoors and call NHS 111 informing them of your recent travel to the city.

What does self-isolation mean for people who don’t have symptoms?

Just like when you have the flu, individuals should remain at home and should not go to work, school or public areas. Where possible, individuals should avoid having visitors to their home but it is ok for friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food. Individuals should not use public transport or taxis until 14 days after their return from Wuhan.

Individuals should monitor their symptoms and call NHS 111 (or your national alternative) if they develop any of the following symptoms – fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.

How does this new coronavirus spread – I’m concerned I could catch it?

Because it's a new illness, we do not know exactly how it spreads from person to person, but similar viruses spread by cough droplets or sneeze droplets. These droplets fall on people in the vicinity and can be directly inhaled or picked up on the hands and transferred when someone touches their face.

How long any respiratory virus survives will depend on a number of factors; for example:

  • what surface the virus is on
  • whether it is exposed to sunlight
  • differences in temperature and humidity
  • exposure to cleaning products

Under most circumstances, the amount of infectious virus on any contaminated surfaces is likely to have decreased significantly by 24 hours, and even more so by 48 hours.

We will continue to update you as necessary and thank you for your co-operation.  For full information, please click on the following links: