"The whole world needs to take action", Michael Ryan, head of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme, told reporters in Geneva.
The World Health Organization is set to decide Thursday whether to declare the new coronavirus, which has sickened thousands and sparked concern around the world, a public health emergency of worldwide concern.
Alphabet Inc's Google said it would temporarily shut all its offices in China and Sweden's IKEA said it had temporarily closed all its stores in the country because of the outbreak of the new coronavirus. The other five were travellers who developed the illness after returning to the U.S. from China.
Ottawa has not yet explained when or how Canadians will be evacuated or what will happen when they land here. "Other individuals though, that are close personal contacts of confirmed cases, could have a risk".
In South Korea, residents of two cities where quarantine facilities are being prepared threw eggs and plastic water bottles at government officials to protest plans to isolate the 700 South Koreans the government plans to evacuate from China and isolate in their neighborhoods.
Officials described the wife as "doing quite well" and that the husband is "stable".
The WHO has confirmed human-to-human transmission, although health experts say they are accelerating their research to fully determine the intensity of human-to-human transmission, full clinical features, and the original source of the outbreak.
"This virus has spread at unprecedented scale and speed, with cases passing between people in multiple countries across the world", he said in a statement.
United Kingdom confirms first coronavirus cases as outbreak spreads globally
One patient is a man in his 50s who had symptoms, and the others-a man in his 40s and a woman in her 50s-are asymptomatic. With most traffic banned, people who venture outside have to walk or bike everywhere in the huge city.
On Wednesday, authorities reported a second case involving someone who had not recently travelled to China.
Outside China, there are 82 infections in 18 countries, according to the World Health Organization.
A Chicago woman has infected her husband in the first USA case of human-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials confirmed Thursday.
The latest case - the sixth in the country - is the husband of a Chicago woman who got sick from the virus after she returned from the epicenter of an outbreak in China.
Both federal and state officials, however, stressed that the pathogen is not spreading widely in communities and the overall risk to Americans remains low. He had underlying health conditions prior to contracting coronavirus.
The WHO has come under fire after it last week declined to declare a global health emergency.
The bottom line: The coronavirus has upended the lives of many Chinese citizens, and it warrants a strong public-health response.
Previous declarations have been issued for two Ebola outbreaks in Africa, the Zika epidemic, the H1N1 swine flu pandemic and the resurgence of wild polio in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria.