BUSINESS as usual. That’s the message coming out of York today following news that the first confirmed cases of coronavirus originated in a city hotel.
Health bosses revealed yesterday that the two patients being treated at a specialist hospital unit in Newcastle fell ill while lodging at the Staycity hotel, in Paragon Street, near York Barbican.
They said they were urgently contacting anyone who had been in touch with the two patients in order to give them health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use should they become unwell in the next 14 days, the incubation period for the virus.
A spokesperson for Public Health England said: “This tried and tested method will ensure we are able to minimise any risk to them and the wider public.”
While it is alarming to discover that the coronavirus has arrived in York, our response has to be proportionate. We must resist the instinct to panic and spread fear. That does no one any good. Our health system is well drilled to deal with infectious diseases. Medics and support staff have strict protocols to follow and practise how to manage emergency situations so that they can cope with the real thing. The hospital in Newcastle caring for the coronavirus cases previously treated ebola patients.
York’s popular ice trail is taking place this weekend – and we hope residents and visitors go out and enjoy it. 
Our cafes, restaurants, bars and world-class tourist attractions will be open as usual.
We need to keep calm and carry on.