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Canada Steps Up SARS Vigilance on China Outbreak

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Canada stepped up its vigilance against the SARS virus on Tuesday, in light of its re-emergence in China, as it looks to avoid importing another serious outbreak of the deadly flu-like disease . Health Minister Pierre Pettigrew said that, for now, the extra precautions will voluntary screening measures, and rely on the honesty of airline passengers.

Canada stepped up its vigilance against the SARS virus on Tuesday, in light of its re-emergence in China, as it looks to avoid importing another serious outbreak of the deadly flu-like disease . Health Minister Pierre Pettigrew said that, for now, the extra precautions will voluntary screening measures, and rely on the honesty of airline passengers. “This very day we will begin to distribute information to every visitor flying into Canada from Southeast Asia and China so that people are more aware of the symptoms, and if they do realize that they would have any of those symptoms they could report it to the authorities,” he told reporters. “Our quarantine officers are on guard in Vancouver, in the Toronto airport as well…. For the time being, we are relying on these existing mechanisms.” Vancouver and Toronto have sizable Chinese populations. Last year, 44 people in the Toronto area died from severe acute respiratory syndrome, and the Canadian economy took a major hit as tourists stayed away. China has isolated 600 people in Beijing in a bid to contain it latest SARS outbreak after a student caught the disease while conducting research at a laboratory. (Source: Reuters Health, April 2004)

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Dates

Posted On: 28 April, 2004
Modified On: 5 December, 2013

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