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Canadian Armed Forces medics on Wuhan flight permitted to leave coronavirus quarantine

Novel coronavirus outbreak: 200+ Canadians begin 14-day quarantine at CFB Trenton
200+ Canadians begin 14-day quarantine at CFB Trenton.

Armed Forces medical staff who accompanied a group of Canadians on a flight home from Wuhan, China, have been given permission to leave quarantine early.

Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer, said the medics are no longer required to stay at CFB Trenton because they don’t pose a risk to public health.

Since late last week, more than 200 Canadians have been evacuated from Wuhan, where a deadly new coronavirus is believed to have originated.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Trudeau says Canada will offer more help to China if needed

They have been under a mandatory 14-day quarantine at the base, located about 175 kilometres east of Toronto, in order to prevent possible spread of the new virus, officially known as 2019-nCoV.

Tam said she has assessed each member of the CAF medical team that accompanied the group.

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Coronavirus outbreak: Canadians repatriated from Wuhan to be tested daily, more to return next week
Coronavirus outbreak: Canadians repatriated from Wuhan to be tested daily, more to return next week

“These individuals are not at risk of exposure to 2019-nCoV as they did not spend time in the epicentre of the outbreak, followed appropriate infection prevention and control protocols (including the use of personal protective equipment), and did not have unprotected contact with passengers or persons at risk of having the virus,” she said in a statement.

In addition to the 174 Canadians flown from Wuhan, another 39 arrived at CFB Trenton by way of a U.S. government flight out of China.

A second flight to pick up more Canadians who have requested assistance leaving China is expected to arrive home on Feb. 11.

READ MORE: Coronavirus has killed more than SARS, but health officials say new cases slowing

Dr. Tam said no one at arriving at CFB Trenton — or their family members — have signs of the virus.

Health officials said Sunday that the new coronavirus has affected 37,198 people, though the rate of infection appears to be weakening.

The death toll rose to 811, exceeding that of the SARS outbreak nearly 20 years ago.

There are seven confirmed cases in Canada.