The coronavirus has spread to Singapore, and health officials in the city-state say one identified patient stayed recently near the Resorts World Sentosa casino.
Three cases of the deadly novel coronavirus have now been confirmed in Singapore. The coronavirus has so far infected more than 900 in China, five in Hong Kong and Thailand, three in Singapore and Thailand, and two in Macau.
There are nearly 950 confirmed cases worldwide. The virus has been blamed for 26 deaths.
In Singapore, health officials say one of its cases is an older man who recently stayed at Shangri-La’s Rasa Sentosa Resort and Spa. The hotel is less than a mile from Resorts World Sentosa.
The man said he did not venture far from the hotel complex, but had close contact with nine companions he was traveling with – one being his 37-year-old son, who was admitted to a hospital on suspicions that he had been infected with the respiratory illness.
Singapore is home to two casinos – the other being Marina Bay Sands, which is roughly four miles from where the infected man stayed.
Casino on Alert
Sands’ homepage says nothing regarding the coronavirus. Resorts World does.
“We have put in place precautionary measures to protect both your safety and our team members. These include increasing the frequency of disinfection across the resort, especially in areas with high traffic. Hand sanitizers, masks, and thermometers are also available, if needed, at various touchpoints.”
Should you feel unwell during your stay or develop respiratory symptoms such as fever, cough, or runny nose, please approach our team members immediately for assistance. Meanwhile, enjoy your time at the resort, and let’s continue to stay vigilant.”
RW Sentosa is owned by the Genting Group, which additionally has integrated resorts in Malaysia, United States, and Bahamas.
Countries on Defensive
Chinese authorities have shut down public transportation and halted passenger flights and train service in Wuhan, where the virus is thought to have originated.
In Macau, authorities have scrapped Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations. In the meantime, all casino workers in China’s Special Administrative Region of Macau have been ordered to wear face masks.
The Chinese New Year is the busiest travel time for the world’s most populated country. The World Health Organization has not yet declared the coronavirus a public health emergency. Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus maintains that “this is an emergency in China, but it has not yet become a global health emergency. It may become one.”
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the most common form of transmission of the coronavirus is through the air, an infected person coughing and sneezing and a recipient inhaling the virus.
Close contact, such as shaking or touching hands, can also transmit the virus. There have been two confirmed cases in the US.
The CDC advises all to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands, and avoid close contact with people who are sick.