Coronavirus: HSBC evacuates floor of London office after employee tests positive for disease

Staff member has self-isolated, bank says

Zoe Tidman
Thursday 05 March 2020 16:18
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HSBC has evacuated a floor of its headquarters in London after an employee tested positive for coronavirus.

A staff member who works on the 10th storey of the Canary Wharf office – where the bank’s research division operates - has been diagnosed with Covid-19.

About 100 people were sent home on Thursday morning after HSBC learned about the coronavirus case at its global headquarters, according to Financial News.

The 10th floor and communal areas of the London skyscraper will be deep-cleaned, the bank has confirmed.

“We have been informed that one of our employees at 8 Canada Square has been diagnosed with Covid-19,” HSBC said in a statement.

“Colleagues on that floor, and others who came into contact with him, have been advised to work at home.”

HSBC said the employee with coronavirus has self-isolated and is under medical supervision, and the bank was “working closely with health authorities”.

“Based on medical and official advice the building remains open and operates as normal,” the company's statement added.

“Our first priority and concern is the health of our employees and customers – and we are encouraging our colleagues to monitor their health carefully and stay at home or call a doctor if they feel unwell.”

There have been 90 confirmed cases of coronavirus – a flu-like disease that can develop into pneumonia – across the UK.

England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, warned this week that a Covid-19 epidemic was looking “likely”.

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