The government is considering temporary travel restrictions on Bangladeshi citizens to fly for China or return home from the country in the wake of deadly Coronavirus outbreak.
Health Minister Zahid Maleque came up with the information while attending a meeting in the city on Sunday.“Bangladesh has a deep trade relation with China. A lot of people are currently travelling to China due to business purpose. If the deadly Coronavirus spreads to our country, it will be a massive disaster for us,” reads a statement, issued by the health ministry after the meeting today.
“Therefore, a temporary ban on travel to China will be considered on priority basis during an inter-ministerial meeting scheduled for Tuesday (January 28). The issues of traveling to China or returning home from the country by Bangladeshi nationals will be emphasised during the meeting,” the statement added.
Zahid Maleque inquired about the number of affected people and the countries, and severity of the outbreak.
He also urged people not to be worried over the spread of coronavirus as the government has taken steps to prevent its outbreak in Bangladesh.
The director general of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) informed the meeting that thermal scanning is in place in all the airports, land ports and river ports of the country.
Some 56 people have so far died from the virus in China.At the end of Saturday in China, there were 1975 cases and a further 2,684 suspected cases, China's National Health Commission said.
In the outbreak of coronavirus in China and globally, Chinese officials have restricted transport in at least 13 cities apart from the virus epicentre, Wuhan, locking down close to 56 million nationals.
The virus itself is a new or "novel" coronavirus - a family that normally affects animals.
One human variant causes the common cold, but another, Sars, killed hundreds in a major outbreak in 2003.
This new virus causes severe acute respiratory infection. Symptoms seem to start with a fever, followed by a dry cough and then, after a week, lead to shortness of breath and some patients needing hospital treatment.
There is no specific cure or vaccine for it.
(With input from UNB)