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Portugal may not be prepared for Wuhan coronavirus

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Christian Fernsby ▼ | February 10, 2020
Portuguese experts warn, in an article published in Acta Médica, that Portugal may not be prepared to face the Wuhan coronavirus and that it has not learned from avian flu and severe acute respiratory infection.
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Health in Europe   Portugal hospital
In an article published on 6 February in the Scientific Journal of the Ordem dos Médicos, the experts write: “It is possible that we are not yet prepared to respond to a suspected case of coronavirus (2019-nCov).

Topics: Portugal Wuhan coronavirus

“The lack of preparation that we witnessed in the first suspected case (which fortunately was not confirmed) should be used to help health services correct their mistakes and be better prepared”.

“These lessons should have been learned a long time ago, after the emergencies of H5N1 avian flu, SARS [severe acute respiratory syndrome], the H1N1 pandemic and Mers-Cov [Middle East respiratory syndrome]”, write pulmonologist Raquel Duarte, from the Faculty of Medicine of Porto, Isabel Furtado, from the infectious disease service of the Centro Hospitalar Universitário do Porto, Luís Sousa, from the Public Health department of the Northern ARS, and Carlos Carvalho, also from this ARS and from the Abel Salazar Biomedical Science Institute.

The experts also defend: "More than being concerned with a number (...), we should ensure that the country is prepared to contain the disease quickly after the emergence of a suspected case or in the contagion of a healthy person".

“Regarding quarantine, experts consider that “the freedom of each individual must be considered, but that the defence of public health must always be a priority”.