Coronavirus: COVID 19 case confirmed in North West

A case of coronavirus has been confirmed in the North West, Public Health England have said.

The patient, a resident of Bury, became infected while in Italy.

According to the CDC the virus that causes Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) might be a "previously unrecognized virus from the Coronavirus family." (Photo by CDC/Getty Images)

According to the CDC the virus that causes Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) might be a "previously unrecognized virus from the Coronavirus family." (Photo by CDC/Getty Images)

Health officials have yet to confirm the age or sex of the patient.

On Sunday, the government said there were currently 12 confirmed cases of coronavirus in England.

In Preston, one school had to be closed last week after a party of schoolchildren returned from a skiing trip in Italy.

Read more: Archbishop Temple School in Preston closes amid coronavirus fears after students return from ski trip to northern Italy

The Bury case was confirmed in a joint statement from Bury Council and Public Health England.

Dr Will Welfare, Interim Deputy Director Health Protection Public Health England North West, said: “Public Health England is contacting people who had close contact with one of the latest confirmed cases of COVID-19. The case is a resident of Bury and became infected whilst in Italy. They are receiving care at an NHS specialist centre.

"Close contacts will be given health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use if they become unwell in the 14 days after contact with the confirmed case. This tried and tested method will ensure we are able to minimise any risk to them and the wider public."

Director of Public Health for Bury Council Lesley Jones said: “I’d like to reassure people that the risk to the general public remains low and Bury Council is working with health colleagues to do everything we can to stop the virus spreading and ensure the people of Bury are protected.

“Good hygiene is the best prevention and there are some simple steps you can take to protect you and your family by washing your hands regularly and thoroughly and if you cough, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue.

“If you have recently been to one of the affected countries and are feeling unwell, you should phone the NHS’s 111 helpline for further advice straight away – please don’t go to your doctor. There’s lots of advice on how people can protect themselves online at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.”

A coronavirus is a type of virus. As a group, coronaviruses are common across the world. Typical symptoms of coronavirus include fever and a cough that may progress to a severe pneumonia causing shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.

Generally, coronavirus can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.