File photo of the paramilitary police officers wearing masks are seen at Shanghai railway station in Shanghai, China January 22, 2020. REUTERS/Aly Song CHINA-HEALTH/ | REUTERS
The Chinese city of Wuhan (size of London, 11 Million people) has been placed into effective quarantine by the local authorities. 6000 people are reported by local doctors to have been infected (571 confirmed by Chinese officials) with a new strain of Coronavirus. This respiratory virus is similar in structure and appearance to the common cold virus but is more lethal. It has already spread to the USA, Japan and it is expected to reach Europe. In China at least 25 people are confirmed dead. No trains or planes are allowed to leave Wuhan for an as yet undetermined period. Such drastic action was also taken during the Ebola outbreak of 2013-2016 when a segment of the population was prevented from leaving their town in Sierra Leone. This indicates just how serious the Chinese government sees the potential lethality of this virus. Asia has recent memory of the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) outbreak in 2003 which spread rapidly killing nearly 10% of all people infected. SARS was also a Coronavirus.