China reports 64 new coronavirus deaths, total at 425

Andrew Cummings
February 4, 2020

On 23 January, the USA ordered the departure of all non-emergency U.S. personnel and their family members from Wuhan in Hubei province, where the virus originated. When sitework began for the first hospital on January 23, the death toll in China was 26 with 830 people diagnosed with the virus. Outside mainland China, at least 180 cases have been confirmed, including one fatality, in the Philippines.

As of early Tuesday, the coronavirus death toll in China stood at 425 with the number of confirmed cases exceeding 20,000.

Fears of the virus have spurred people in the densely-populated country of 1.4 billion to stock up on single-use surgical masks, while frontline medical personnel at the centre of the outbreak have reported equipment shortages.

A hospital built in just eight days to treat people with the virus in Wuhan will begin to take patients on Monday, state media said.

With no end to the outbreak in sight, authorities in Hubei and elsewhere extended the Lunar New Year holiday break, due to end this week, well into February to try to keep people at home and reduce the spread of the virus.

Chinese scientists said they have more evidence the virus, which was first detected in Wuhan in December, likely originated in bats.

The report found that, of the first 99 patients treated at the Jinyintan Hospital in Wuhan, 40 had a weak heart or damaged blood vessels. The mortality rate of SARS was 9.5 percent and with coronavirus, 2 percent of people infected have died.

"The spread of the virus within China has been so severe - termed a global health emergency by WHO - that tens of millions of Chinese residents, cities vital to global supply chains and trade flow, are in complete lockdown", said Bethel Loh, a macro strategist at ThinkMarkets.

China's foreign ministry reiterated on Tuesday the United States should refrain from overreacting on the coronavirus outbreak and called on Washington to work with Beijing and the worldwide community to deal with the epidemic.

President Donald Trump has offered to send experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to China, but Beijing has yet to accept the offer of help. City officials took the lead on building the structure, working with the country's health ministry and others. Thailand has confirmed 19 cases, mostly Chinese tourists but also in a Thai taxi driver. "I was in Hong Kong nine days ago and it seems to be too late now".

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