The Japanese cruise ship Diamond Princess where 10 people tested positive for the new coronavirus 2019-nCoV will be quarantined for two weeks, Japan's Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare Katsunobu Kato told a press conference on Wednesday.
"We plan to take all necessary measures to disinfect the ship's premises and prevent the spread of the virus. Moreover, we think that the ship needs to be quarantined for 14 days starting from February 5, and that people should stay on the ship," the minister said.
The cruise ship left Yokohama on January 20 and returned on February 3. On the way, the ship stopped at ports on the Japanese islands of Okinawa and Kyushu, as well as in Hong Kong and Vietnam. The 80-year-old man who was initially infected with the coronavirus remained on the ship on January 20-25, and he left the ship in Hong Kong. He was hospitalized as well, and his condition is stable, TASS reports.
The Japanese authorities said that the cruise ship should remain anchored near Yokohama. Doctors performed medical exams on the passengers and confirmed 10 cases of the new coronavirus. The patients were hospitalized in Kanagawa prefecture, and their condition is stable.
So far, 23 cases of the new coronavirus were confirmed in Japan.
On December 31, 2019, Chinese authorities informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about an outbreak of an unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, a large trade and industrial center in central China populated by 11 million people. On January 7, Chinese experts identified the infecting agent: coronavirus 2019-nCoV.
According to the latest reports, over 23,600 people were infected witht the new coronavirus, and the death toll surpassed 490.
Cases of the new coronavirus were also confirmed in 24 other countries, including Russia. The WHO declared the new coronavirus outbreak an international public health emergency.