Parents Allegedly ‘Abandoned Sick Kids At Airport And Flew Away’ Amid Coronavirus Outbreak
An eye-witness account has alleged that two parents abandoned their child at an airport in China amid the chaos of the coronavirus outbreak.
At least 830 people have been confirmed to have contracted the mysterious virus in China so far, with the official death toll standing at 26 – most of them coming from the Hubei province.
While it’s yet to be declared a public health emergency, hysteria is erupting around the world as multiple cases pour in. For these parents, it appears it may have got the better of them.
A Weibo user (with the name Not shy) wrote online about seeing a child left alone at Nanjing Lukou International Airport after the child apparently had a fever and wasn’t allowed to board.
While the young boy’s dad said he wasn’t sick, the staff were allegedly steadfast in their refusal, leading to the parents and airport crew arguing at the boarding gate for three hours, causing serious delays for other passengers.
Eventually, according to the Weibo user, the parents just got on the plane, leaving the feverish boy and his sibling alone at the airport, and subsequently leaving the staff to take care of them in their mum and dad’s absence.
The Chinese government has now locked down more than 11 million people in the city of Wuhan (where the virus originated), with a new 1,000-bed hospital being fast-tracked to cope with the outbreak. Nine other cities in the Hubei province have also been locked down.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) explains that ‘coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome’. However, the current coronavirus is a new, previously unidentified strain.
As for what symptoms the virus induces, WHO explains:
Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.
Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
The virus has popped up in other places outside China: South Korea, Japan and the US have confirmed cases, while 14 people in the UK have been tested for it (so far, five have been cleared). At least six people in Scotland with coronavirus symptoms have also been tested.
While anxiety regarding the virus is soaring around the globe, WHO’s emergency committee says it’s ‘too early’ to declare an international emergency. ‘It has not yet become a global health emergency. It may yet become one,’ said WHO director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, as per The Guardian.
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CreditsNot shy/Weibo and 3 others
World Health Organisation