WILTSHIRE'S first suspected case of coronavirus has been reported after it was spotted by alert medics in Bradford on Avon, closing the town's GP surgery.

It is understood a man visited the surgery yesterday morning reporting symptoms similar to coronavirus, and staff promptly locked the doors, treating the patient while reassuring other sick people there was no risk to their health and the surgery was taking the precautions advised by NHS England.

One man who visited the surgery, Martin, told the Times: "Half of the reception area was cordoned off. We went to a waiting area and were told not to touch anything on the right hand side of the corridor.

"We waited for a bit and then the doctor that had initially stopped us from going in came in and said 'We have a possibility of the coronavirus, a patient with the same sort of symptoms.'

"I felt I did not want to be there, but she assured us there was no risk, they were just taking precautions. We left out the back, door they kept the front closed." The 36-year-old, who lives in Bradford on Avon, said he felt confident the practice staff had handled the emergency well and followed the guidelines they had been given.

"Hopefully they (the patient) are OK and it's not, the doctors all seemed to be on top of it," he said. "It was definitely being handled right, that made us feel better. Fingers crossed!"

The UK currently has 13 people who have tested positive and are being treated for coronavirus, none of whom are from Wiltshire, with over 6,500 tests carried out nationwide.

Official advice to medical professionals on how to deal with suspected coronavirus patients has been issued. In the past few days, some surgeries in Wiltshire have texted patients warning them not to come in to the GP if they feel unwell with flu-like symptoms like those of the coronavirus, but to stay at home and call NHS 111.

More information on what to do if you feel unwell with a cough, fever and shortness of breath and have recently returned from parts of northern Italy or South East Asia, or have been in contact with someone who has, can be found at www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The Bradford on Avon Health Centre has been contacted for comment on this report.

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