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General News / January 28, 2020

Irish man in Wuhan spends his birthday alone to avoid coronavirus

General News / January 28, 2020

Irish man in Wuhan spends his birthday alone to avoid coronavirus

County Kildare man Ben Kavanagh chose to stay indoors to avoid the risk of spreading the virus.

Birthdays are an excuse to share a moment with close family and friends and to celebrate life. However, psychology teacher Ben Kavanagh spent his most recent birthday cordoned off from society rather than in the presence of loved ones.

The reason for this isolation is the mysterious coronavirus. There’s a sense of uncertainty when it comes to the virus, which comes from animals. It’s a novel coronavirus in that it’s a member of the coronavirus family that hasn’t been encountered before.

Mr Kavanagh has lived in the Chinese city of Wuhan for nearly two years and stated he had concerns that he could spread the virus if be left the city.

Channel 4 ben kavanagh coronavirus

(Photo: Channel 4)

He spoke to Newstalk Breakfast and said that he stayed indoors after doing a “big shop” on Sunday. He’s predicted he has enough supplies to last 2 weeks and when he did go out at the weekend he “wore a mask”.

Continuing he noted, “Everyone is keeping to themselves because there is such a long incubation period.”

Turning down an offer to spend his birthday with a friend on Tuesday the Kilcullen man said no, “because there’s no way to tell if anyone is infected.”

“I’m trying my best not to get infected.”

Speaking to the BBC Ben described Wuhan as a “ghost town”, late saying “I can look out my window now and see no one”.

Photography: Channel 4