During what should be a week of parties and celebration for Chinese New Year, it has all been sadly tainted by the pathogen that is the Coronavirus. Whilst families across the UK have hung out their lanterns and couplets to get into the festive spirit, their thoughts and prayers are solidly with family and friends back home.
In Chinese legend it is said that Jade Emperor named the first zodiac after the rat, as he used his intelligence and assertiveness to win a race against all the other animals; let us hope that this can be translated in stopping the spread of virus around the world.
In an attempt to aid the situation Sinolink Healthcare have taken measures to source surgical masks, coveralls and goggles to send to nurses and doctors in various provinces, as certain areas are struggling to obtain these basic essential items. We will endeavour to help as best we can to support our friends abroad.
So what does this mean for out observerships? Well sadly we have had to postpone all programmes in for the foreseeable future, at the request of the hospitals we work with. This is in the hope that limiting travel from provinces across China, will help to slow down the pandemic and the most vulnerable will have less chance of coming in to contact with carriers. We are still hoping to place observers from May onwards, so are welcoming future applications when the severity of the situation has calmed down.
As a final thought we encourage everyone to try stay safe – keep hydrated, aim to cover your mouth and nose in public places and invest in some hand sanitiser and when you can spare a prayer for China!