Americans flown home from cruise ship, 14 with coronavirus




The quarantined ship (Reuters photo)

An estimated number of 300 American passengers have been sent home, after two weeks of been quarantined in a Japanese cruise ship located at the outskirts of China. A total of 14 of these passengers where said to be isolated throughout the flight because they had been tested positive for the corona virus.

The cruise ship by name the Diamond Princess had the largest cluster of coronavirus cases recorded, outside China. The number of recorded cases has become the biggest threat so far for other countries as it posed a test to their ability to contain the epidemic that has claimed the life of 1,770 people in China and five in other countries.

In the mainlands of China, official reports claimed that the total number of corona virus cases increased from 2,048 to 70,548. This report proposed a slight increase your in the number of new cases than were reported on Sunday, but hundreds fewer than reported on Saturday.

Chinese authorities also stated that the stabilisation in the number of new cases is a sign that indicates that necessary steps have been taken to reduce the spread of the virus across the country.

However, epidemic experts say, that most likely it is too soon to determine how far the outbreak is being contained in China and its mainland, where the virus was said to have  first appeared.

China’s first major response to the virus was to effectively lock down Wuhan, the provincial capital of Hubei, China. The capital has a total of 11 million people in its populace.

The government is also doing its best to prevent the economy from crumbling, primarily because the movement of people and goods around the country and also of people to and from China faces huge discrepancies.

Another news that came on Monday says that China’s central bank has cut its interest rate on its medium-term loaning. This strategic move is expected to create a way to reduce the benchmark loan prime rate on Thursday. Beijing has also made plans to reduce taxes and fees in the country.

But nevertheless, economic experts expect China’s economic to show a massive reduction in growth. On Monday, renowmed ratings agency, Moodys, reduced its 2020 GDP growth forecast to about 5.2%, which means that China will probably miss its goal to double its GDP over the coming decade.

CRUISE SHIPS

In the outskirts of China, more than half of all known cases of the corona virus have been confirmed aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship. Reports state that about if not more than 400 people have been tested positive of the virus, ever since the ship was asked to stay under quarantine outside Japan  on Feb. 3.

The United States government were the first to evacuate its citizens from the cruise liner, transporting them out of the ship overnight on two military aircrafts to military bases located in Texas and California, where they were quarantined for two weeks.

The state department then stated that after the American citizens were returned back to the airport, health personnels then realised that 14 persons have tested positive for the virus. The state department also stated that these 14 persons were isolated from the remaining passengers and made to fly home.

Other countries decied to follow in America’s footsteps, having made plans to isolate and recuperate its citizens from the liner, although, at least half of the 3,700 passengers and crew were Japanese citizens.

Health authorities round the world also tried to locate passengers from another cruise liner, with the name Westerda. This ship was turned away from seaports across Southeast Asia and spent two weeks on the seas before docking in Cambodia on Thursday.

An American citizen who disembarked from the ship in Cambodia tested positive for the virus in Malaysia on Saturday.

Carnival Corp, an organisation that controls both cruise liners, said it was doing its best to cooperate with authorities in their conjoined efforts to track down passengers from the Westerdam. But so far, none of the 1,454 passengers and 802 crew members had shown any symptoms of virus, it said.

“Visitors who have been returned home will be contacted by their local health service department and then be provided with the necessary information,” this was announced by the company’s Holland America Line unit. They said that alot of  passengers are still in Cambodia, either aboard the ship or they are staying in hotels.

Passenger Holley Rauen said, “We all will be examined for the corona virus, between today and tomorrow by the Cambodian Ministry of Health”. Holley Rauen is a public health nurse and midwife in her home town Fort Myers, Florida. “she said she is oblivious of when she will go home”.

CHINA BACK TO WORK?

After the long Lunar New Year holiday, Chinese residence and government really needs to resume their various work in offices. There is every chance that there will be a delay in the opening of the annual session of parliament, which is due to commence on Feb. 24.

Some cities have been quarantined, streets have been deserted, employees/employers have become anxious, and also bans and quarantine measures have been placed throughout the country. Many factories in china are yet to re-open, disrupting supply chains across the country.

In Japan, data analysis showed on monday reported that the economy had suffered a major loss during the last quarter at the fastest pace in almost six years, the impact of the epidemic is stiil expected to take effect in this current quarter of the year, increasing the fears of recession.

A trade dependent country im asia, Singapore, reduced its 2020 economic growth forecast and has braced itself for the upcoming recession. Although the country is ready to reveal measures to minimise the damage on Tuesday.

An anonymous figure with an inside information told Reuters that the oganisers of the Tokyo Marathon have decided to limit the upcoming race in March 1st to only top-level athletes, restricting the involvement of 38,000 general participants.

Emperor Naruhito’s public birthday address taking place on the 23rd of Feb is also said to be cancelled in due time. The public address was suppose to be his first address since his coronation last year. This particular event normally attracts tens of thousands of people to the inner housing of the Imperial Palace located in Tokyo ,Japan.