The Health Secretary has said that the new coronavirus was a serious and imminent threat to public health, the announcement by Matt Hancock gives the government additional powers to fight the spread of the virus, which originated in Wuhan, China.
“The Secretary of State declares that the incidence or transmission of novel coronavirus constitutes a serious and imminent threat to public health,” the health ministry said.
“Measures outlined in these regulations are considered as an effective means of delaying or preventing further transmission of the virus,” the ministry said.
The ministry designated Arrowe Park Hospital and Kents Hill Park as an “isolation” facility and Wuhan and Hubei province in China as an “infected area”. The total number of deaths from the disease has now exceeded 900, with many people in a critical condition in China.