The 34-year-old student traveled from Beijing to the Félix-Houphouët-Boigny International Airport in Abidjan on Saturday and was coughing, sneezing and experienced difficulty breathing, Ivory Coast’s Ministry of Health and Public Hygiene said in statement.
The student was moved to a safe location upon arrival at the airport and is currently under medical observation, the ministry said.
Authorities believe it is highly likely a case of pneumonia and not coronavirus, but the final diagnosis will be made after the analysis of the results of the test, the ministry said.
Michel Yao, WHO Africa emergency response program manager, said the agency had advised health ministers in the region to activate standard flu screening at airports for passengers coming from mainland China.
Screening at airports
Residents are urged not to panic, to maintain proper hygiene, and to visit the closest health center in case of fever, cough, or breathing difficulties.
Aviation authorities in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, said airlines operating in its airspace should update crew members on how to handle sick passengers on board their aircrafts.
In rare cases, they are what scientists call zoonotic, meaning they can be transmitted from animals to humans. The viruses can make people sick, usually with a mild to moderate upper respiratory tract illness, similar to a common cold.
Symptoms include a runny nose, cough, sore throat, and infected persons may have headaches and maybe a fever, which can last for a couple of days.
Source: CNN Africa