In Macau and health officials have reportedly advised the city’s many casinos to take a variety of measures such as installing body temperature monitors so as to help stop a potential outbreak of ‘viral pneumonia.’

According to a report from GGRAsia, the Thursday caution from the enclave’s Heath Bureau followed the recording of what the authority called ‘several cases of viral pneumonia of unknown origin’ in the giant central Chinese city of Wuhan, which has daily air links with Macau via services run by Air China Limited and China Southern Airlines Company Limited.

Proliferation possibility:

GGRAsia reported that local health officials are worried that the highly-infectious condition may soon enter Macau where it could be spread further afield by patrons in the city’s 41 casinos. As such, the Health Bureau has purportedly joined with the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau regulator to instruct operators that they should install ‘temperature screening devices’ at the entrances to their venues.

Temperature vigilance:

Lei Chin-Ion, Director for the Health Bureau, reportedly moreover asked casino operators to train staff in recognizing the symptoms of ‘viral pneumonia’ and immediately send patrons exhibiting such signs to hospital. He purportedly also wants venue employees to ask gamblers with a fever if they have visited Wuhan within the previous two weeks.

SARS concerns:

China suffered through a nine-month outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome, which is more commonly known by the acronym SARS, beginning from November of 2002. This bacterial disease went on to infect approximately 8,000 people around the world and led to over 770 deaths.

The Reuters news service reportedly cited an earlier story from China’s state-run People’s Daily newspaper on Tuesday in detailing that the source of the Wuhan illness remains ‘not clear.

Reportedly read the People’s Daily piece…

“We cannot confirm it is what’s being spread online, that it is SARS virus. Other severe pneumonia is more likely.”