Coronavirus: London GP surgery closes over deadly virus and patients told to call 111

Closure follows a London woman testing positive for the virus after self-presenting to A&E in Lewisham on Sunday

Shaun Lintern
Health Correspondent
Thursday 13 February 2020 14:43
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World Health Organisation gives an update on coronavirus

A GP surgery in North London has closed due to coronavirus, according to a post on its website.

“Any patients that have the symptoms should call 111 and not come to the practice,” a pop-up notice reads.

On Wednesday, the first case of coronavirus was confirmed in London, bringing the total positive patients in the UK to nine.

A London woman, a Chinese national, tested positive for the virus Covid-19 after arriving in Heathrow at the weekend on a flight from China.

After becoming unwell the woman visited the emergency department at the University Hospital Lewisham on Sunday.

The Chinese province at the epicentre of the outbreak reported a record rise in the death toll under a new diagnostic method, with 242 deaths recorded on Wednesday, taking the total number to more than 1,350.

Ben Travis, chief executive of Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust, said: “There has been a confirmed case of coronavirus from a patient who self-presented at the A&E department of University Hospital Lewisham on Sunday 9 February.

“The test result was confirmed as positive on Wednesday and we have been in touch with all staff who came into contact with the patient. The patient went to St Thomas’ yesterday evening.

“Our colleagues in our emergency departments are following the latest advice and protocols from Public Health England. In this case, the patient self-presented at our A&E.

“As soon as the patient did this, the patient was given a mask and then escorted to be tested in the dedicated area we have assigned for coronavirus testing outside the A&E building – while awaiting the installation of a purpose-built ‘pod’.

“As further assessment was required, the patient was then taken to a dedicated isolation room in the emergency department.

“In line with our protocols, throughout their care, the patient was escorted and did not come into contact with other patients. The patient was later discharged and taken home by London Ambulance Service.

“All staff who had direct contact with the patient have been contacted, including two members of staff who are undergoing active surveillance at home for a 14-day period as a precautionary measure – following the advice of Public Health England.”

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