The view from Laura Noonan's plane as a passenger is taken to hospital
There is a possible case of the deadly coronavirus in Ireland, according to a Longford passenger who flew from Moscow to Dublin earlier today.
Ballymahon doctor, Laura Noonan, has been receiving regular treatment in Russia for a rare illness she has been suffering for a long number of years.
Due to complications in Moscow, the local woman flew home a day early and found herself on a flight with a passenger suffering from what paramedics believe could be the deadly virus, which has been spreading from China.
The virus can cause symptoms such as cough, fever and shortness of breath. In a limited number of cases, it has led to more severe infections and death.
"Russia is very close to China and there were no checks in the airport whatsoever regarding previous travel or current health status," Ms Noonan posted on her Facebook page, Laura's Russian Lifeline.
"A sick man got on this plane knowingly."
When her plane landed in Dublin, passengers were not allowed to disembark and Ms Noonan explained in her Facebook post that paramedics believe the sick man may have the fast-spreading virus.
The man was escorted from the plane by a paramedic wearing a full hazmat suit, while the patient was given a mask.
"We are terrified," said Laura.
In a later post, Laura published a photo of a health warning given to passengers of the plane, advising them that they have been on a flight with a possible case of novel coronavirus. The notice warns passengers to stay away from other people and to contact a doctor should they experience illness.
"I'm too sick for this. I was too sick to fly home today only for Archie helping in every way to get me home and now this," Laura posted.
"I have zero immune system. No hope of fighting anything. Hoping my mask and hand gel were enough to protect me."
The information handed to passengers on the plane warns that the virus could spread through close contact with a person who has symptoms from the virus, mainly coughing.
Passengers are advised to stay home and phone a doctor or 999 for advice, mentioning that they were on the flight. A Public Health doctor will contact each of the passengers tomorrow.
Laura added that she noticed a scary increase in the number of people wearing masks in the airport compared to her last trip to Moscow.
Laura and her husband Archie are still on the plane along with other passengers.
For more information on novel coronavirus, go to www.hpsc.ie.
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