HONG KONG: Hong Kong confirmed its first case of a new flu-like coronavirus on Wednesday (Jan 22) following an outbreak in the central mainland China city of Wuhan, local broadcasters RTHK, Cable TV and TVB said, citing unnamed sources.
The outbreak, which began in Wuhan, has spread to more Chinese cities including the capital Beijing, Shanghai, and Macau and cases have been reported outside the country's borders, in South Korea, Thailand and Japan.
READ: Singapore to form Wuhan virus ministerial task force, imported case 'inevitable': Gan Kim Yong
The patient arrived in Hong Kong via high-speed railway from the mainland, and has been quarantined at the Queen Elizabeth hospital, the reports said.
Officials are expected to announce details of the case at 7.30pm local time.
The Hospital Authority on Tuesday enhanced laboratory surveillance for pneumonia cases, to include patients with travel history to all of mainland China, rather than just Wuhan.
Hong Kong had deployed temperature screening machinery at the airport and the high-speed rail station. Air passengers are required to fill in health declaration forms. Some 500 isolation wards at public hospitals were available, with more ordinary wards to be converted if necessary.
Coronaviruses are a family of viruses named because of the crown-like spikes on their surfaces that cause respiratory illnesses ranging from the common cold to the deadly Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).