Coronavirus: Kenya quarantines student back from China

A Kenyan student from China with symptoms similar to those of the deadly coronavirus has been quarantined at the national referral hospital in the capital, Nairobi.

The hospital’s Communication Manager Hezekiel Gikambi has told the BBC that the patient had arrived at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport early Tuesday morning on a Kenya Airways flight from Guangzhou, China, and was rushed to the hospital.

This is the first suspected case in Kenya and the second in Africa.

The Ministry of Health is yet to release an official statement, but the government had earlier warned its citizens against all but essential travel to China’s Wuhan city, until the outbreak of the coronavirus there has been contained.

The foreign affairs ministry said it was in touch with Kenyans who are stuck in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, that is now on lock-down.

“The embassy is aware that there are 85 Kenyans in Wuhan who are registered with the embassy and is closely monitoring the situation,” the ministry said in a statement on Monday.

Kenyans stuck in Wuhan have come up with a Twitter hashtag dubbed #KenyansInWuhan.

They want the government to evacuate them.

Kenya’s travel warning comes a few days after airport officials in Ivory Coast identified a patient who had similar symptoms to those of the coronavirus. It is not yet confirmed if the patient had contracted the deadly virus.

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