Coronavirus: Death toll rises to 80 in China; over 2,700 cases confirmed
The overall number of confirmed cases in China is 2,744. State media say more than 300 are critically ill.
Eighty people are dead and more than 2,700 cases have been confirmed in mainland China, as the Wuhan coronavirus continues to spread throughout Asia and the rest of the world.
Wuhan in China’s Hubei, the source of the outbreak, is in lockdown and several cities have imposed travel bans.
The country's National Health Commission has reported 2,744 confirmed cases of the fatal affliction till date. State media say more than 300 people are critically ill.
The Commission also termed the condition of the 461 people being treated for the virus, officially known as 2019-nCoV, as "critical".
The Commission's said during the past 24 hours, 769 new confirmed cases, 3,806 new suspected cases and 24 deaths from the disease were reported.
By Sunday, the pneumonia situation had resulted in a total of 80 deaths, while 51 people had recovered and 5,794 remained as suspected patients, state run Xinhua news agency quoted the Commission as saying.
A total of 32,799 close contacts have been traced, the commission said, adding 30,453 among them were currently under medical observation while 583 others were discharged on Sunday.
Almost all provinces in China except Tibet have reported the virus cases.
In addition, 17 confirmed cases were reported in Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions and Taiwan, besides eight in Hong Kong, five in Macao and four in Taiwan.
Coronavirus cases overseas
Overseas, confirmed cases included seven in Thailand, four each in Australia and Singapore, three each in the United States, the Republic of Korea, Japan, France and Malaysia, two in Vietnam and one in Nepal.
The Mayor of the Hubei province capital Wuhan, which has emerged as the epicentre of the epidemic outbreak, said he expects another 1,000 new patients in the city, official media reported.
“There are signs showing the virus is becoming more transmissible. These walking ‘contagious agents’ (hidden carriers) make controlling the outbreak a lot more difficult,” he said.
More than half a million medical staff have joined prevention, control and treatment operations in Hubei.
Two new makeshift hospitals with at least two-thousand beds are being built and factories are rushing to produce masks and protective clothing.
China has also decided to adopt a host of measures, including delaying and reducing conferences and major events, extending the current Spring Festival holidays and supporting online work.
To reduce population flows, the meeting decided on measures such as extending the Spring Festival holiday, which is scheduled between January 24 and 30, and delaying the start of the spring semester at colleges and schools.
It called for maximum efforts to reduce the mortality rate of patients and enhance their treatment.
More research will be conducted on cured patients and treatment measures will be further refined, with more training programmes scheduled for medical workers, an official statement said.
WHO Director-General @DrTedros said on Twitter Sun that he will go to China to meet with the government and health experts to support the #coronavirus response. His team would strengthen the partnership with China in providing further protection against the outbreak. pic.twitter.com/wzJvx6CJmg— People's Daily, China (@PDChina) January 27, 2020
China's National Health Commission on Sunday said the new coronavirus is contagious even in its incubation period, which lasts up to 14 days, and that the virus' ability to spread is getting stronger.
The virus itself is a new, or "novel" coronavirus - a family that normally affects animals.
One human variant causes the common cold - but another variant, Sars, killed hundreds in a major outbreak in 2003.
The coronavirus causes severe acute respiratory infection and there is no specific cure or vaccine.