Statement on Covid-19 (coronavirus)

Publication date: 25 February 2020

Latest statement from the Royal College of GPs on Statement on Covid-19 (coronavirus).

Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: "It's vital that everyone is on the same page about Covid-19 and the College is closely monitoring updates from relevant authorities, such as Public Health England (PHE) and equivalent organisations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. We have also developed an online hub, that we are regularly updating, that includes links to the latest guidance from across the UK, as well as practical resources for those working in primary care.

"The current threat to the UK is still considered moderate and while thirteen cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in the UK, including the four confirmed cases from the Diamond Princess cruise ship, NHS England and PHE are assuring patients that there are robust arrangements in place to manage the situation.

"We are in an ever-changing situation but the most important thing is to keep it in perspective and not to be alarmed. Patients should not be alarmed as it is still more likely that anyone with flu-like symptoms will have the flu.

"However, we'd like to remind the public that any patient who has been to or has had contact with someone who has been to an affected area and has symptoms, including a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, should not go to the GP surgery or A&E department, but stay at home and call NHS 111. Affected countries are currently listed as China, Thailand, Japan, Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and/or Macau in the last 14 days, and/or Northern Italy (north of but not including, Pisa, Florence and Rimini), Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and/or Myanmar since 19 February.

"If a patient who fits this criteria does arrive at a GP surgery practice staff should place them in isolation, where possible, and then current PHE guidelines should then be followed.

"The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is currently advising against all travel to Hubei province in China, and all but essential travel to mainland China. It is also recommending that anybody who has returned from Wuhan and/or the Hubei province in the past 14 days and anybody who has returned from Iran, specific lockdown areas in Northern Italy as designated by the Government of Italy, and/or special care zones in South Korea as designated by the Government of the Republic of South Korea since 19 February stays indoors and avoids contact with other people where possible – and that they advise health authorities of their situation by calling NHS 111."

Further Information

RCGP Press office: 020 3188 7494/7574/7575
Out of hours: 0203 188 7659

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 53,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.

The item has been added to your basket.

Continue shopping

Go to basket

This item is out of stock.

Continue shopping

The item is out of stock.

Yes Continue shopping

An error occurred adding your item to the basket:

Continue shopping