A statement on coronavirus from the Encephalitis Society:

Whilst coronavirus could theoretically be a cause of central nervous system infections like encephalitis, there have been no reported cases during this outbreak despite several thousand people being infected with the virus.

Previous cases of coronavirus encephalitis have predominantly occurred in patients with existing immune deficiencies.

Our best current information on the ongoing outbreak is that, overall, there is approximately a 2–3% case fatality risk. This is comparable to other respiratory virus outbreaks, such as that seen with influenza.

The Encephalitis Society will continue to monitor developments closely through the information provided by the World Health Organization, Public Health England and the other international bodies.


Dr Benedict Michael, Vice Chair of the Scientific Advisory Panel - Encephalitis Society

Dr Ava Easton, Chief Executive of the Encephalitis Society.