FEARS over coronavirus in Oxfordshire have been fuelled by reports of suspected cases at Bullingdon prison, the John Radcliffe Hospital and an ambulance spotted being decontaminated outside the Headington hospital.

UPDATE: Prisoner at centre of Bullingdon coronavirus testing named

It also comes as students are set to arrive this week at the Boars Hill campus of Peking University Business School from China, where more than 1,000 people have died from the disease.

Sam Kent, who was stood outside the John Radcliffe Hospital’s A&E department on Saturday night said at around midnight she saw people being ‘ushered to a cabin’ to be tested for coronavirus.

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The 33-year-old said: “Staff were in close contact with no special measures in place to contain the spread and both people with the suspected virus entered the A&E department first where more than 100 were in close contact.”

She explained she and a man overheard a conversation between the member of staff who took the man and woman back outside and ‘very loudly’ pointed them to the cabin with a mask and told them to go in a room and ring 111 and tell them that they suspected they had the virus.

All hospitals have been told by the NHS to create 'assessment pods' for patients with suspected coronavirus.

Ms Kent, who lives in Abingdon, said it had made her feel ‘very unnerved’ as it was ‘so close’ to the A&E entrance.

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A picture of an ambulance appearing to be being decontaminated by people in white protective suits and face masks has also been shared with the paper.

It is not clear whether the two incidents are related and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (OUH), which runs the John Radcliffe has declined to comment on the photograph.

The person who took the picture wished to remain anonymous but said it was taken at about 11.30am on Monday outside the hospital, with the vehicle parked for a ‘couple of hours’ in a delivery bay near the Heart Centre.

A man was quarantined at an Oxford hospital last week after returning on a flight from Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak, which landed at RAF Brize Norton in West Oxfordshire.

ALSO READ: Man who became ill on Wuhan flight taken to hospital in Oxford

Following these latest concerns OUH reiterated its previous statement about the virus, saying: “It is our policy not to confirm or comment on the treatment of individual patients,in order to safeguard patient confidentiality.”

The trust directed instead to the government’s website, which has daily updates on the virus.

Reports also emerged yesterday that two prisoners at HMP Bullingdon, near Bicester had been tested for coronavirus. Claims included that cells had been shut down and that medics in hazmat suits were seen. Public Health England said it could not comment on the claims.

Peking University Business School's UK campus, which is based at Foxcombe Hall just outside Oxford, meanwhile, has said it is taking steps to ensure safety as an influx of students from Peking University in Beijing arrive.

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A member of staff confirmed new students were expected this week, adding: "We are working on this to make sure we are keeping the risk to a manageable scale."

National advice was also published across the county's health providers' websites yesterday.

It said the NHS in Oxfordshire and Public Health England were ‘extremely well prepared’ for outbreaks of new infectious diseases.

It added: “The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.The risk to the general public is moderate.”

As of yesterday, a total of 1,358 people have been tested, of which 1,350 were confirmed negative and eight positive.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said the spread of coronavirus 'will get worse before it gets better' as he yesterday announced greater powers and funding to help tackle the spread of the disease.