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400 property conference delegates warned over Coronavirus risk

Those attending last week's Guild event in central London were exposed to the risk after a delegate to a previous gathering at the venue became a confirmed case of Coronavirus.

Nigel Lewis

The 400 or more delegates to last week’s Guild conference and exhibition in central London have been told to self-isolate if they develop Coronavirus symptoms.

This warning comes after a delegate who attended a previous event at the venue the week before became a confirmed case of Coronavirus or COVID-19. The delegate had attended a bus conference at the QEII centre just off Parliament Square on 6th February, six days before the Guild’s day-long event.

This event hit the headlines when two MPs, who had attended the event, announced they had voluntary quarantined themselves as a precaution following advice from Public Health England.

An email sent to all the Guild delegates assures those who attended that the organisation had no knowledge of the confirmed Coronavirus case prior the event. The confirmed case is a businessman who had been in contact with 53-year-old Steve Walsh, who was last week revealed as a ‘super-spreader’.

Walsh had infected ten people during a skiing holiday after arriving from a business event in Singapore, two of whom were UK doctors while a third attended the bus conference at the QEII centre.

Case confirmed

“We feel it is our responsibility to advise you that this case has been confirmed and encourage you to follow the advice from Public Health England, should you have any concerns at all,” the Guild email says.

The QEII centre has also released a statement revealing that the confirmed case is not the person reported said to have taken a taxi from the event to the nearest hospital, and that the risk of Guild delegates being exposed to the virus is low.

Nevertheless, the document has asked all delegates to the Guild and bus conferences, and its staff at the event, to be vigilant should they develop symptoms. These include a fever, cough or chest tightness and shortness of breath.

The QEII centre says it will remain open but has implemented increased its sanitary measures, and asks that any future conference organisers ensure that a 16 day quarantine period is implemented should any colleagues have travelled to China and Hong Kong since 18 January.

Read more about the Guild conference.

Read the official guidance about Coronavirus.

February 17, 2020

One comment

  1. Covid 19, is causing havoc to the conference season, and on a personal note I have cancelled two international conferences because of it. I have also slimmed down my commitments to conferences and seminars in London, over the next couple of months.

    The upside is I will have more time to actually get on with some work, and with the interconnection of all humans to their mobiles, I do not feel I will have missed out on too much.

    I am glad that the government has steered a non-reactionary course regarding the Coronavirus outbreak and my thoughts are with all of those affected. Hopefully, with prudent measures as the year continues containment will become a reality.

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