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QEII Centre delegates warned after coronavirus scare

Hundreds of conference attendees in London have been contacted by health officials a delegate at the QEII Centre was later diagnosed with coronavirus.

The delegate, who has not been identified, attended the UK Bus Summit at the QEII Centre in Westminster last week.

Conference organisers Transport Times emailed attendees on Thursday (13 February) afternoon informing them that a person diagnosed with coronavirus had been at the event.

The email included Public Health England advice that no action was needed if they felt well, but if they developed symptoms such as a fever or cough they should stay indoors, avoid contact with others and call NHS 111.

It added that the conference delegates should follow the advice until 20 February, “even if your symptoms are minor”.

Mark Taylor, chief executive of the QEII Centre said: “On the advice of Public Health England, The QEII Centre remains fully open and events will continue to take place as normal.”

“All QEII staff have been advised if they develop symptoms of a cough or fever or shortness of breath, they should immediately stay indoors and avoid contact with other people, as you would with the flu and call NHS 111.

“Public Health England has stated that the risk of exposure or transmission to other delegates at the 6th Annual Bus Summit is low. However, as a precaution, Public Health England has informed QEII that it is contacting all attendees via event organiser Transport Times.”

He added that the QEII Centre “takes the health and safety of its clients, staff and partners very seriously and in addition to the business’s existing, thorough health and safety and hygiene practices, is following updated advice from the UK Government and Public Health England.”

Two Labour MPs who were at the conference said they felt well – but as a precaution were cancelling all public engagements until 20 February.

Buses minister Baroness Vere, a keynote speaker at the conference, is “following Public Health England advice”, according to the Department for Transport.

The industry continues to feel the effects of the coronavirus outbreak. Mobile World Congress (MWC), the world’s biggest smartphone conference, was cancelled after a slew of household-name exhibitors pulled out citing concerns over the spread of the virus.

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