By Barry Ellsworth
TRENTON, Canada (AA) – Canada’s second “presumptive” case of coronavirus was reported Monday and it is the wife of the man who was first reported to have contracted the respiratory illness.
Health officials in Toronto said she has been in self-isolation since landing with her husband at Pearson International Airport on Saturday.
“Given the fact that she has been in self-isolation the risk to Ontarians remains low,” said Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s chief medical officer of health, in a statement Monday. “We are working alongside Toronto Public Health, who has been in regular contact with the individual during their self-isolation period.”
Both man and wife had returned from Wuhan, a city at the centre of the coronavirus outbreak in China.
The man, who is in his 50s, remains in stable condition in a Toronto hospital. His wife is not being treated at the hospital.
Health officials said they are trying to contact other passengers aboard the plane to test them for the virus.
Also Monday, Chinese officials reported deaths from the coronavirus have reached 76 in Hubei province where the coronavirus was first detected in Wuhan and an additional four deaths in another part of the country. Confirmed cases rose to 2,744.
The presence of the coronavirus is said to be “presumptive” until the Winnipeg National Microbiology Lab confirms the Ontario lab test, making it official.
Doctors said while the risk of infection remains low, Canadians should take precautions such as frequent handwashing and sneezing or coughing into the arm of garments, not the hand.
The doctors also said that surgical masks have little effect in prevention in the environment outside hospitals.