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COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019 nCoV)

 

Update of February 25th, 2020


Latest Ministry of Health Updates

Press conference of February 24th, 2020..

The Health Department director reminds us that it is important not to panic, no case of the virus has been reported in Luxembourg, all the tests are negative to date.

Covid-19 case definition

  • A person with clinical signs of severe respiratory infection, with a fever above 38°C, who has travelled or stayed in an exposure risk area within 14 days before the date of onset of clinical signs of infection.
  • A person showing clinical signs of severe respiratory infection within 14 next days of close contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19 while the case was symptomatic.

In case of positive symptoms

  • Make your presence known to the health services.
  • Contact the Health Inspectorate on +352 247 85650 or via 112 (outside office hours) who will direct you to the appropriate department for testing and quarantine.
  • Do not go to the emergency room or to your doctor to avoid spreading the virus in waiting rooms.

Ministry of Health instructions (PDF files in French)

Advices on the use of masks

Wearing a medical mask is one of the preventive measures to limit the spread of certain respiratory diseases, however, the use of a mask alone is insufficient to ensure an adequate level of protection, this measure must be combined with hand hygiene.

Mask Management

If medical masks are worn, proper use and disposal are essential to ensure their effectiveness and to avoid any increased risk of transmission associated with improper use and disposal of masks.

  • carefully place the mask to cover the mouth and nose and fasten securely to minimize any gap between the face and the mask;
  • avoid touching the mask during use;
  • remove the mask using an appropriate technique (i.e. do not touch the front but remove the mask by holding it by the strap at the back);
  • after removal or whenever a used mask is inadvertently touched, clean hands using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or soap and water ;
  • replace the mask with a new clean, dry mask as soon as it becomes wet;
  • do not reuse single-use masks ;
  • single-use masks should be discarded after each use and immediately after removal;
  • Fabric masks (cotton / gauze) are not recommended under any circumstances.

Wearing medical masks when not indicated can create a false sense of security that can lead to neglect of other essential measures such as hand hygiene.

 


 

What is this new coronavirus raging in China? (COVID-19)

In the past, two strains of coronavirus have caused severe epidemics: SRAS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome).

In mid-December, an outbreak of pneumonia caused by a coronavirus family virus never before identified in humans broke out in Wuhan, a Chinese city of 11 million people, in Hubei province.

The epidemic is currently spreading but it is important not to panic. 98.8% of the diagnosed cases are in China. Luxembourg has no direct connection with the city of Wuhan, nor direct flights to China.

The WHO, for its part, considers that an animal appears to be "the most likely primary source", with "limited human-to-human transmission through close contact". On Monday January 27th, it reclassified the threat as "high" on the International level.

On February 11th,
The World Health Organization named this virus COVID-19, a name that gives a standard format to use for any future coronavirus outbreaks.

The organization also mentioned that the first vaccine could be ready in 18 months.

 

What are the COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019 nCoV) symptoms?

Common signs of infection are respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. In more severe cases, the infection can cause pneumonia.

The incubation period (the time between infection and the onset of symptoms) would range from 6 to 14 days, during which the individual is symptom-free.

A preventive visit to the doctor is therefore not indicated.

 

How dangerous is the COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019 nCoV)?

The mortality rate of this virus is currently under 3%, however, it is still highly contagious, which is why some cities have been confined.

 

What can I do to avoid the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019 nCoV)?

Based on currently available information, WHO does not recommend any travel or trade restrictions. Countries are encouraged to continue to strengthen their preparation for health emergencies in accordance with the International Health Regulations (2005).

Standard recommendations to prevent the spread of infection include regular hand washing, covering the mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing and sneezing. Avoid close contact with anyone with symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

 

In case of symptoms of infection upon return from a risk area

  • avoid contact and wear a facemask;
  • use disposable tissues;
  • wash hands regularly with soap and/or hydro-alcoholic solutions.

Do not visit your doctor or the emergency room to avoid risk of transmission.
Promptly contact the Inspection Sanitaire on +352 247 85650 or via 112.

The goal is to limit the spread of the virus as much as possible and not to bring suspected cases into contact with the rest of the population.

In Luxembourg, suspect cases will be handled by l'Inspection Sanitaire and Le Service National des Maladies Infectieuses will carry out clinical management. Samples will be taken in confinement at the CHL and sent to the LNS for testing.

Currently only symptomatic cases are detected in order not to saturate the infrastructures.

 

Also consult

 

Source: World Heath Organization - Ministère de la santé, Luxembourg