As of January 26th, 2,744 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in China, as the death toll reached 81.
In addition, 461 are in critical condition. On January 26th itself, 769 new cases were confirmed. There were 3,806 new suspected cases and 24 deaths (only in the Hubei province) from the disease were reported, showed figures from the National Health Commission.
Chinese national outlet reported that the government was undertaking additional steps to counter the spreading infection.
2,744 cases of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus have been confirmed in China. The government has been taking a series of measures to further curb the spread of the epidemic pic.twitter.com/RyFbzg62zM
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) January 27, 2020
A total of 32,799 close contacts have been traced, the commission said, adding that among them, 583 were discharged from medical observation on Sunday, with 30,453 others remaining under medical observation.
The figures also showed that 17 confirmed cases had been reported in Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions and Taiwan, with 8 in Hong Kong, 5 in Macao and 4 in Taiwan.
Additional, confirmed cases were reported in Thailand (7), Japan (3), the Republic of Korea (3), the United States (3), Vietnam (2), Singapore (4), Malaysia (3), Nepal (1), France (3) and Australia (4).
China announced that the Lunar New Year holiday will be extended to February 2nd as a measure to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak.
Universities, primary and secondary schools, and kindergartens across the country shall postpone the start of the semester, said a State Council General Office circular, adding that the specific time for the semester start will be unveiled by respective education authorities.
All levels of financial departments in China have allocated a total of 11.21 billion yuan (about $1.63 billion) to combat the spreading novel coronavirus.
The construction of the special facilities, similar to the one built back in 2002-3 for the SARS outbreak is on-going, as there is even a livestream showing its progress.
More than half a million medical staff have joined the epidemic prevention, control and treatment of patients in Hubei, said Li Tao, an official with the Hubei Provincial Health Commission.
“We have also brought a large number of medical treatment materials. We believe our participation will add to the medical force and increase the confidence to overcome the epidemic,” said Zhang Mingming, a member of the Shanghai medical team at the Wuhan Jinyintan Hospital.
“I have no doubt that with all the concerted efforts from across the country, we will contain the epidemic situation,” said Song Liqiang, 50, deputy head of the Xijing Hospital’s Respiratory and ICU Department in Xi’an, capital of Shaanxi Province.
Experts of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) successfully isolated the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in the environmental samples of a seafood market in Wuhan, indicating that the virus stems from wild animals on sale at the market.
So far 14 cities have been closed off, all of them in the Hubei province. Approximately 52 million people live in the cities.
Countries in Asia have stepped up airport surveillance. They include Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines.
Australia and the US are also screening patients for a high temperature, and the UK announced it will screen passengers returning from Wuhan.
Dr Jonathan Read, a biostatistics researcher at Lancaster, wrote with colleagues:
“If no change in control or transmission happens, then we expect further outbreaks to occur in other Chinese cities, and that infections will continue to be exported to international destinations at an increasing rate.
In 14 days’ time (4 February 2020), our model predicts the number of infected people in Wuhan to be greater than 250 thousand (prediction interval, 164,602 to 351,396).
The estimate we came back with was that one in 20 people becoming infected are getting detected and confirmed as cases. There is potentially a lot of people not recognized.
This could be for a number of reasons. One that springs to mind the most, common with respiratory and flu-like viruses, is a lot of people will get sick and never seek medical help. Unless you present yourself to a doctor or a hospital you won’t get counted.”
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