First London Coronavirus Patient Took An Uber To A&E
According to Sky News, the anonymous patient got the taxi service to drop them at University Hospital Lewisham where they self-presented on Sunday.
As the patient explained the problem, NHS staff immediately gave them a face mask and took them to a special area to be tested.
Uber confirmed the driver's account has now been suspended.
In a statement to LADbible, a spokesperson for Uber said: "We received a request from Public Health England for information about a passenger who has now been confirmed as having coronavirus.
"Out of an abundance of caution, we temporarily suspended the account of the driver who transported the individual to hospital, and we remain in close contact with Public Health England.
"We have a dedicated online portal for public health authorities to contact Uber for information about riders and drivers, and we will take action on any user accounts on the recommendation of those authorities."
Ben Travis, chief executive of Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust, confirmed that the patient's test result did in fact come back positive on Wednesday and they were transferred to a specialist NHS centre at Guys and St Thomas' Hospital.
In a message to staff, published by The Guardian, Travis said: "We wanted to let you know that we have had a confirmed case of coronavirus from a patient who self-presented at the A&E department of University Hospital Lewisham (UHL) last Sunday (9 February).
"The test result was confirmed as positive yesterday (Wednesday 12 February) and we have been in touch with all staff who came into contact with the patient. The patient went to [a specialist unit at] St Thomas' yesterday evening, so we are now able to update all staff."
Discussing the patient's arrival at the hospital, he added: "In this case, the patient self-presented at our A&E. As soon as the patient did this, the patient was given a mask and then escorted to be tested in the dedicated area we have assigned for coronavirus testing outside the A&E building - while awaiting the installation of a purpose-built 'pod'.
"As further assessment was required, the patient was then taken to a dedicated isolation room in the emergency department. In line with our protocols, throughout their care the patient was escorted and did not come into contact with other patients. The patient was later discharged and taken home by London ambulance service."
The virus, which has killed over 1,300 people (at the time of writing) and infected many, many more, now has an official name: Covid-19.
It is believed that animals in Wuhan, China, could be the suspected primary source of the outbreak with the disease being compared to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which killed nearly 650 people back in 2002-2003.
UPDATE on #coronavirus testing in the UK:
As of 2pm on Thursday 13 February 2020, a total of 2,521 tests have concluded
2,512 were confirmed negative
Updates will be published at 2pm daily until further notice
For latest information visit
- Department of Health and Social Care (@DHSCgovuk) February 13, 2020
Passengers travelling on flights coming into the UK from Wuhan have been taken to quarantine centres to be fully tested.
Camryn Turner, a British blogger, has shared footage of life inside Kents Hill Park in Milton Keynes where 118 Brits are being holed up while they are tested for the deadly virus.
Camryn, who has dual British and South African citizenship, was studying music in Wuhan when the coronavirus crisis hit the city.
The 27-year-old was bundled into a bus and taken to the centre on Sunday (9 February) after flying into RAF Brize Norton from Wuhan.
Taking a tour of his room, he says: "Each patient in quarantine at the hotel has been allocated two rooms. One of the rooms is for sleeping, relaxing, making tea and coffee, watching TV.
"We've been provided with kitchen towels and cleaning surface wipes so we have to clean our own rooms and disinfect everything. We've also been supplied with rubbish bags which we can fill up and leave outside our doors once they're full.
"We've also been supplied with a box of around 100 medical face masks. We've been informed to only wear a mask for 20-minute periods before taking them off."
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