Friday, May 10, 2013

Coronavirus: 2 Suspected Cases Coronavirus in France, Contacts of Confirmed

Published Date: 2013-05-09 20:41:36
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Novel coronavirus - Eastern Mediterranean (22): France, susp. RFI
Archive Number: 20130509.1702445
A ProMED-mail post
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International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: 9 May 2013

Source: Reuters [edited]

Two people who had contact with a Frenchman who is seriously ill with the new SARS-like coronavirus have fallen sick and been admitted to hospital, health officials in northern France said on Thursday [9 May 2013].

One is a patient who shared a ward with the 65-year-old man infected with the virus when he was in a hospital in the town of Valenciennes, northern France, at the end of April [2013], and the other is a doctor who treated him there.

The 65-year-old carrier, who fell ill on his return from a trip to Dubai, has since been transferred to an isolated intensive care wing in a hospital in Douai, near the northern city of Lille, where he is in a critical condition.

The ARS local health authority said the 2 other men were in individual rooms in separate hospitals, one in Lille and the other in the nearby town of Tourcoing and that tests had been carried out on both of them.

"They show symptoms which require a special infectious diseases consultation," the ARS said in a statement. "The results of the tests carried out on these 2 people will be known soon and will be made public."

As France reported the 65-year-old as its 1st case of the coronavirus on Wednesday [8 May 2013], the World Health Organization said it would send experts to visit a Saudi hospital from which the virus has spread, killing 7 people so far.

The French case brought the total number of known infections worldwide to 31, of which 18 resulted in death.

Coronavirus is from the same viral family that triggered the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) that swept the world from Asia in late 2003, killing 775 people.

Despite there being no evidence so far of sustained human-to-human transmission, health experts' concerns are growing over clusters of new cases.

[Byline: Pierre Savary, Catherine Bremer, Michael Roddy]

Communicated by:

Date: 9 May 2013
Source: Liberation [in French, trans. Mod.MPP, edited]

Health officials fear that a former roommate of the 1st French patient with the new coronavirus and a doctor [who cared for the 1st patient] have in turn been infected, and both have been hospitalized, one in Lille and the other in Tourcoing.

These 2 people have had specimens taken [for laboratory testing], the results of which "will be announced soon," according to a statement of the Regional Health Agency Nord/Pas-de-Calais (ARS) in a press release.

The roommate, a man in his 50s who had [contact] with the patient during his stay in CH Valenciennes from [27 to 29 Apr 2013], "since Wednesday [8 May 2013] has had symptoms requiring an infectious disease consultation, [and has had specimens submitted to the laboratory], and is being monitored in a single room in the hospital," said the ARS.

One of the doctors from the Hospital in Valenciennes, aged 35, who was also in contact with the patient diagnosed with the coronavirus infection, "presented with symptoms necessitating hospitalization in the infectious disease service of the hospital in Tourcoing, and specimens have been taken for laboratory testing," added the LRA.

These 2 people were "identified" as part of the "search" for contacts of the case," that is to say people who have been in contact with the patient during his hospitalization in the hospital in Valenciennes and then in Douai.

This latter institution [the hospital in Douai], where the [confirmed case of nCoV] was hospitalized from 29 Apr 2013 until he was transferred during Wednesday night [8 May 2013] to the University Hospital in Lille, "indicated the absence of symptoms in contacts of this patient as of today [9 May 2013]," says the ARS.

The northern patient with the novel coronavirus infection, [in the same family as SARS], the 1st confirmed case in France, was in stable condition in the ICU of the Lille University Hospital on Thursday [9 May 2013] but still in very serious condition.

This patient, aged 65, "was immediately placed in a room designed for patient isolation," where he is supported by a dedicated team, according to the University Hospital of Lille.

He was hospitalized on [23 Apr 2013] in Valenciennes (North), then transferred to Douai on [29 Apr 2013]. He had travelled to Dubai (United Arab Emirates) from [9 to 17 Apr 2013]. Before his hospitalization, he was followed by the hospital in Valenciennes for a chronic disease.

The patient had respiratory failure that required cardiopulmonary support on Wednesday [8 May 2013] to take over his lung function; he is under "intensive monitoring" at the Lille University Hospital.

This 1st French case has occurred 10 years after the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) pandemic, which began in China and was associated with more than 800 deaths, causing worldwide concern. Infections with [the nCoV] have been detected in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, the United Kingdom and Germany.

Communicated by:

[If these 2 suspected cases are confirmed, this will raise the total number of confirmed cases of the nCoV infection to 35 and will represent the 4th cluster of presumed person-to-person transmission of this virus, and the 3rd nosocomial cluster. Other nosocomial clusters have occurred in Jordan (April 2012) and Saudi Arabia (April/May 2013), and the other person-to-person cluster among contacts of a case occurred in the UK (February 2013).

For a map of France showing the cities where the patient was hospitalized (Valenciennes, Douai, and Lille), see All 3 cities are located in the Department of Nord, in the Region of Nord-Pas de Calais (see map of France with Departments at, located in the northernmost portion of France.

More information on the results of testing of these contacts would be greatly appreciated. - Mod.MPP

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at:]

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