The flight evacuation mission for covid-19 from Wuhan, China to Tokyo, Japan from January 28 to February 17, 2020

Kazuhiro Kamata, Kazuaki Jindai, Kazuhiko Ide, Takanori Funaki, Hiroki Saito, Nozomi Takeshita, Norio Ohmagari, Eiji Hinoshita, Kazunari Asanuma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Multiple countries have reported evacuation missions to repatriate their citizens in the early phase of the emergence of COVID-19 from China. However, a paucity of data exists on how to optimally execute an evacuation while balancing the risk of transmission during the flight and avoiding spread to the evacuees’ home countries. We describe the collective findings of the flight evacuation mission from Wuhan, China to Tokyo, Japan from January 28 to February 17, 2020. The evacuation team established the evacuation processing flow, including a focused health questionnaire, temperature monitoring, ticketing and check-in, and boarding procedure planning. The evacuees were seated according to pre-planned zones. Additionally, to facilitate the triage of evacuees for medical needs, we conducted in-flight quarantine to determine the disposition of the evacuees. All evacuees, regardless of their health condition, were required to perform rigorous hand hygiene frequently and to wear surgical masks throughout the flight. We implemented strict infection prevention and control throughout the mission, including in-flight quarantine. The pre-planned protocol and vigilant observation during the flight were crucial elements of this mission. Our experience is of value in developing a more refined plan for the next outbreak.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-376
Number of pages4
JournalJapanese journal of infectious diseases
Volume74
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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