Two cases of the new Chinese coronavirus have been "confirmed" in France, on patients hospitalized in Paris and Bordeaux, announced Friday evening the Minister of Health Agnès Buzyn, stressing that these were the "first European cases".
The two hospital patients who had both traveled to China were placed in segregation.
"We are in the process of reassembling the history of these positive patients so as to get in touch with the people they have met," explained the minister during a press point, noting that the incubation period was probably "around 7 days, between 2 and 12 days".
"Today we have the first European cases, probably because we developed the test very quickly and are able to identify them," said the minister.
People with whom coronavirus positive patients have been in contact must "take their temperature several times a day, contact center 15 in case of symptoms and stay at home for now to avoid any further contact which would promote the spread of the virus. virus, "the minister insisted, calling on people not to go to the emergency room if they have symptoms.
The first patient, aged 48, returned to France on January 22 after "a few days" in China where he notably "passed through Wuhan", and was hospitalized on Thursday in Bordeaux, said Ms. Buzyn. "He is fine," she said.
"We know that since he has been on French territory, he has been in contact with a dozen people, we will contact them".
The minister, who indicated that she had information on the second positive case just before the press point, was unable to give details of the patient, indicating however that he had gone to China and that he was hospitalized at Bichat hospital in Paris.
Ms. Buzyn noted that it was not possible to control the "multiple routes" to return from China: "we can see the difficulty in a world like ours of closing the borders, it is in reality not possible" .
"For travelers returning from China, it is important to keep an eye on yourself, and at the slightest sign of breathing or if you have a fever, you should not go to the emergency room, you must call center 15 which picks up the patient", she insisted.
China has stepped up efforts to contain the spread of a new killer virus with the confinement of more than 40 million people.
The official report of the disease caused by this coronavirus which appeared in December on a market in Wuhan, a city in central China, further worsened on Friday, with 26 deaths.
© 2020 AFP