Coronavirus: More than 30 people tested as officials hunt for 2,000 people who have flown to UK from China

Authorities are trying to track down 2,000 people who have travelled from China (Picture: PA)

More than 30 people in the UK have been tested for coronavirus but there are still no confirmed cases, the Government said on Saturday.

The Department of Health (DoH) said as of Saturday afternoon, 31 people across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have been tested for virus, but all had come back negative.

There are also no confirmed diagnoses in UK citizens abroad, and the risk to the public is still classed as low.

The update comes as authorities were trying to track down2,000 people who recently flew to the UK from the Chinese region of Wuhan to check they have not been affected by the deadly coronavirus.

The Department of Health said it is trying to find “as many passengers as we can” who travelled to Britain from Wuhan - the region most affected by the outbreak - in the past two weeks, with health officials working with Border Force agents and airlines to track them down.

On Friday coronavirus was confirmed as reaching Europe, with three cases confirmed in France.

England’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty previously said there was a “fair chance” cases will emerge in Britain as the overall number reported around the world climbed to more than 1,200, including 41 deaths, all in China.


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Speaking after a meeting of the Government’s Cobra emergency committee in Whitehall on Friday, chaired by Health Secretary Matt Hancock, he said he was working closely with the other UK chief medical officers.

“We all agree that the risk to the UK public remains low, but there may well be cases in the UK at some stage,” he said.

Coronavirus: confirmed cases. See story HEALTH Coronavirus. Infographic PA Graphics

He went on: “The UK has access to some of the best infectious disease and public health experts in the world.”

He added: “We think there’s a fair chance we may get some cases over time. Of course this depends on whether this continues for a long time, or whether this turns out to be something which is brought under control relatively quickly.”

He said the virus looked less dangerous than Ebola, recent coronavirus MERS and SARS virus.

It has been confirmed that 14 people in Scotland with symptoms have tested negative for the coronavirus (Picture: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

A public health hub has been set up at Heathrow, staffed by a rotating team of seven clinicians, but there are no plans to introduce blanket temperature screening of travellers because it can take seven to 10 days for symptoms to appear.

China is in lockdown, with public celebrations cancelled in major cities.

The US has also reported its second case, involving a Chicago woman in her 60s, while Australia also confirmed its first case in the state of Victoria.

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