WHO is following up with Chinese authorities about a cluster of COVID-19 cases in Beijing, People’s Republic of China.
Today, officials from the National Health Commission and Beijing Health Commission briefed WHO’s China country office, to share details of preliminary investigations ongoing in Beijing.
As of 13 June, 41 symptomatic laboratory confirmed cases and 46 laboratory confirmed cases without symptoms of COVID-19 have been identified in Beijing.
The first identified case had symptom onset on 9 June, and was confirmed on 11 June. Several of the initial cases were identified through six fever clinics in Beijing. Preliminary investigations revealed that some of the initial symptomatic cases had a link to the Xinfadi Market in Beijing. Preliminary laboratory investigations of throat swabs from humans and environmental samples from Xinfadi Market identified 45 positive human samples (all without symptoms at the time of reporting) and 40 positive environmental samples. One additional case without symptoms was identified as a close contact of a confirmed case.
All cases are in isolation and under care as needed, and contact tracing is underway. Genetic sequencing of samples is also underway and rapid sharing of these results is important to understand the origin of the cluster and links between cases.