Coronavirus declared a global emergency as more Canadians seek help to get out of China

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The World Health Organization on Thursday declared the coronavirus outbreak a global emergency as the federal government scrambled to airlift Canadians out of the affected region in China. The declaration will step up international efforts to combat the spread of the virus that already has confirmed cases in 18 countries, including three reported in Canada. “The committee believes that it is still possible to interrupt virus spread, provided that countries put in place strong measures to detect disease early, isolate and treat cases, trace contacts, and promote social distancing measures commensurate with the risk,” the health organization said in a statement.