Coronavirus: Burnaby’s sister city Zhongshan in China asks for help with supply of medical masks

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      Burnaby has received a letter from one of its sister cities in China connection with the coronavirus outbreak.

      The city of Zhongshan in Guandong province is asking for help in procuring medical face masks, particularly the N95 type, and medical protective clothing.

      N95 masks have been seen increased demand following the outbreak of the a novel coronavirus or 2019-n COV.

      The current outbreak was first reported from the Chinese city of Wuhan in Hubei province on December 31, 2019.

      “As you might read on the news, China is suffering from the coronavirus epidemic and we are in shortage of medical face masks at the moment,” states the letter addressed to Burnaby councillor James Wang and city staff member Aaron Fourt.

      The letter was sent by Gavin Yao, deputy section chief of the Zhongshan foreign affairs bureau, and deputy secretary general of the Zhongshan People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries.

      “In Zhongshan, we have around 30 confirmed cases while the medical face mask inventory is going to see a shortage soon,” Yao wrote.

      According to Yao, domestic N95 mask producers are transporting their supplies to the province of Hubei “as they need it most”.

      “Therefore, we are seeking overseas assistance of sourcing…masks and protective clothing for our medical staff,” Yao wrote.

      Based on a February 11, 2020 situation report by the World Health Organization, there are 43,103 confirmed cases of coronavirus worldwide.

      China has the most number of confirmed cases at 42,708.

      There have been 1,017 deaths in China due to the coronavirus.

      There is one death recorded outside China.

      The Chinese province of Hubei is the epicenter of the outbreak with 31,728 confirmed cases.

      The province of Guangdong, where Zhongshan is located, has 1,177 cases.

      Based on figures reported by WHO on February 7, there are seven confirmed cases in Canada.

      The letter from Zhongshan is included in the agenda Thursday (February 13) of Burnaby city council.