China seeks to identify cause of mystery pneumonia infecting 44
2020-01-03 from cbc.ca
Chinese health authorities are trying to identify what is causing an outbreak of pneumonia in the central city of Wuhan, officials said on Friday, as the tally of cases rose to 44 and Singapore said it would screen arrivals on flights from there.
Authorities this week said they were investigating 27 cases of infection after rumours on social media suggested the outbreak could be linked to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
The World Health Organization said it was aware of the reports, is monitoring the situation and is in contact with the Chinese government about it.
"Investigations are still being carried out and authorities cannot yet confirm what pathogen is causing this illness," said WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic. He added that there are several potential causes of viral pneumonia, many of which are more common than SARS.
Chinese municipal health officials in Wuhan said in a statement on their website on Friday that they had ruled out common respiratory diseases, such as influenza, bird flu and adenovirus infection, as the cause.
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