Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak Kills 41 In China, Over 1,000 Affected: Updates

Coronavirus Outbreak Updates: China's aggressive response has won praise internationally, especially compared to SARS, in which it was accused of a slow-footed reaction and stonewalling the international community.

Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak Kills 41 In China, Over 1,000 Affected: Updates

Coronavirus Outbreak: Lockdown in China has affected over 41 million people.

Hong Kong has declared the outbreak of coronavirus as an "emergency" -- the city's highest warning tier -- as authorities ramped up measures to reduce the risk of spread of infections. 

"Today I declare the lifting of the response level to emergency," chief executive Carrie Lam told reporters.

China has launched a massive quarantine effort for Wuhan where coronavirus outbreak has triggered health warnings in several countries across the world in the last few days. Several other cities in China are also under lock-down as number of deaths due to the outbreak have jumped to 41. 

The number of confirmed coronavirus infections in China also surged to 1,287, up from 830 reported on Friday. Most of the deaths and overall cases were in central province of Hubei; Wuhan is Hubei's capital. 

The transport bans and other measures in the affected cities cover a staggering 41 million people.

China's aggressive response has won praise internationally, especially compared to SARS, in which it was accused of a slow-footed reaction and stonewalling the international community.

Here the updates on efforts across the world to contain Wuhan Coronavirus outbreak:

Jan 25, 2020 17:27 (IST)
Trapped Wuhan residents stock up masks, medicines amid Coronavirus scare
Police at a roadblock on the outskirts of Wuhan turned away cars trying to leave the virus-stricken city on Saturday, as other anxious residents trapped inside spent the Lunar New Year stocking up on masks and medical supplies or in long hospital queues.

Authorities have prevented anyone from leaving Wuhan, the city of 11 million people at the heart of the viral outbreak which has so far infected nearly 1,300 people and killed 41 others.

AFP saw a steady trickle of cars approaching the roadblocks around 20 kilometres (12 miles) east of the city centre on Saturday morning, only for police in fluorescent jackets wearing masks to tell them to turn around.

The barricade, at one of the tolls for highways exiting the city, was blocked with red and yellow plastic barriers and cones.

"Nobody can leave," a policeman told AFP.
Jan 25, 2020 16:26 (IST)
Australia Confirms Four Cases Of Coronavirus, Expects More

Australia confirmed its first four cases of the new coronavirus in two different cities on Saturday, with the country's chief health official saying he expected more cases as Australia was a popular destination for Chinese tourists.

Three men, aged 53, 43 and 35 were in a stable condition in Sydney's Westmead hospital after they were confirmed to have the virus on Saturday after returning from China earlier this month, said the New South Wales state Health Minister Brad Hazzard.


Two of the men travelled to Sydney from the city of Wuhan, where the virus first appeared, and the third from China's southeastern Shenzhen.

A Chinese national in his 50s, who had been in the city of Wuhan is in a stable condition in a Melbourne hospital after arriving from China on Jan. 19, Victoria health officials said. (Reuters)
Jan 25, 2020 16:04 (IST)
Wuhan To Build Second New Hospital For Coronavirus Cases

A central Chinese city that is the epicentre of a new SARS-like virus outbreak is building a second hospital "within half a month" to treat cases, state media reported Saturday.

According to the People's Daily, the new hospital will add 1,300 hospital beds, in addition to another new facility which is being built in Wuhan to deal with the outbreak -- reportedly within 10 days.
Jan 25, 2020 15:22 (IST)
ALERT: Wuhan to build second new hospital to treat coronavirus cases

Jan 25, 2020 15:10 (IST)
China's Sanya City Shuts All Tourist Sites

China's Sanya city in the southern island province of Hainan has shut down all tourist sites in the city to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the city government said on Saturday.

Sanya is one of the favourite tourist destinations during the week-long Lunar New Year holiday which lasts until Jan 30.

Jan 25, 2020 14:39 (IST)
Hong Kong Declares Wuhan Virus Outbreak An Emergency


Hong Kong on Saturday declared the outbreak of a mystery virus as an "emergency" -- the city's highest warning tier -- as authorities ramped up measures aimed at reducing the risk of further infections spreading.

"Today I declare the lifting of the response level to emergency," chief executive Carrie Lam told reporters.

Jan 25, 2020 14:14 (IST)
Wuhan To Restrict Car Traffic From Sunday

China's virus-struck city of Wuhan will restrict car traffic as it battles to contain the outbreak of the new coronavirus, the local government said Saturday.

"Motor vehicles shall be prohibited from driving in the central urban areas" from midnight, the government said, with a few exceptions such as official vehicles. (AFP)
Jan 25, 2020 13:02 (IST)
Japan Confirms Third Case Of Wuhan Virus

Japan has confirmed a third case of infection by China's coronavirus, the health ministry said on Saturday. The latest case was confirmed in a woman in her 30s who lives in Wuhan, the Chinese city at the centre of the outbreak. She arrived in Japan on Jan. 18, the ministry said. (Reuters)

Jan 25, 2020 12:45 (IST)
From Temples To Disneyland, China Shuts Down Over Coronavirus 

China has quarantined cities and shut major tourist attractions from Disneyland to the Forbidden City and a section of the Great Wall as it scrambles to stop a deadly SARS-like virus from spreading further.

The drastic moves come as hundreds of millions of people criss-crossed the country in recent days to celebrate the Lunar New Year holiday, which officially started Friday and is typically a joyous time of gatherings and public celebration.

Here is a rundown of the measures taken so far in an unprecedented quarantine effort:

Cities under lockdown

Public transport has been stopped in 13 cities in central Hubei province, with train stations shut, events cancelled and theatres, libraries and karaoke bars closed in some locations.

The epicentre of the outbreak is provincial capital Wuhan, the biggest city on lockdown, where the government has halted all travel out of the Yangtze River metropolis of 11 million.

Wuhan residents have been told to stay home and authorities are limiting the number of taxis allowed on roads. There are few flights available to the city, deepening the isolation.

Similar quarantine measures are being taken in the other, smaller cities. These include strict controls on weddings and funerals, temperature screening of people as they arrive and the suspension of online taxi services.

More than 41 million people in total are affected by the city shutdowns.

Festivities Cancelled

Wuhan and Beijing have cancelled public events that usually attract hundreds of thousands of people to temples during the New Year holiday.

Gao Fu, head of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, has asked China's 1.4 billion citizens to forego New Year gatherings and confine themselves at home until all is clear.

To discourage nationwide travel, the government also said all tickets for rail, air, road, or water transport could be refunded.

Attractions Closed

The historic Forbidden City, a sprawling imperial palace in Beijing that is one of the country's most revered cultural sites, will temporarily close from Saturday.

Other famous landmarks including a section of the Great Wall, the Ming Tombs and Yinshan Pagoda are also not open to visitors.

Shanghai Disneyland said it would shut for an indefinite period "to ensure the health and safety of our guests and cast".

Women's Olympics football qualifiers scheduled for February 3-9 in Wuhan have been moved to the eastern city of Nanjing.

Temperature Checks

Staff in full body protective suits were seen checking the temperatures of people entering a subway station in Beijing on Friday.

The country has ordered sterilisation and ventilation at airports and bus stations, as well as inside planes and trains, while travellers are being screened for fever.

Health authorities are urging people to wash their hands regularly, avoid crowded places, get plenty of fresh air and wear a mask if they have a cough.

In Wuhan, city authorities have made it mandatory to wear a mask in public places.

In response to skyrocketing demand for masks -- starting to sell out at pharmacies and on some popular websites -- China's industry and information technology ministry said it would "spare no effort in increasing supply".

New Hospital

In Wuhan, authorities are rushing to build a new hospital in a staggering 10 days as a rising number of patients are infected by the new coronavirus.

The facility is expected to be in use by February 3 and will have a capacity of 1,000 beds spread over 25,000 square metres, according to state media.

Dozens of excavators and trucks were filmed working on the site by state broadcaster CCTV.

Its construction began after reports surfaced of bed shortages in hospitals designated as dealing with the outbreak, which has now infected 830 people across China.
Jan 25, 2020 12:00 (IST)
Passengers On Flights, Trains To Be Checked For Coronavirus

China has ordered nationwide measures to identify suspected cases of a deadly virus on trains, aeroplanes and buses, as the death toll and number of patients has skyrocketed. 

Inspection stations will be set up and passengers with suspected pneumonia must be "immediately transported" to a medical centre, the National Health Commission said in a statement.
Jan 25, 2020 11:43 (IST)
China Orders Nationwide Measures To Detect Virus On Flights, Trains, Buses: AFP
Jan 25, 2020 11:35 (IST)
China Locks Down More Cities, 56 Million People Affected

Some 56 million people are now affected by transport bans around the epicentre of China's virus outbreak as five more cities announced travel restrictions on Saturday to contain the disease.

The rules include closing public transport links and access to highways in the cities, local authorities said.

A total of 18 cities now have some sort of travel restrictions in central Hubei province. (AFP)

Jan 25, 2020 11:20 (IST)
Alert: China imposes travel ban on more cities, restricting 56 million people





Jan 25, 2020 11:19 (IST)
Where All Has Coronavirus Spread: 

China

As of Saturday, almost 1,300 people have been infected across China, the bulk of them in and around Wuhan.

Nearly all of those who died were in the Wuhan region, but officials have confirmed two deaths elsewhere.

The city of Macau, a gambling hub hugely popular with mainland tourists, has confirmed two cases.

In Hong Kong, five people are known to have the disease. Three of those cases were confirmed in the 24 hours to Saturday morning.

France

There are three known cases of the coronavirus in France, the first European country to be affected by the outbreak.

One person is sick in Bordeaux and another is ill in Paris. A third person, who is a close relative of one of the other two, has also been confirmed to have the virus.

All three had recently travelled to China and had now been placed in isolation.

Japan

Japan's health authorities confirmed a second case on Friday. Local media said the patient was a man in his 40s who was originally from Wuhan and on a trip to Japan.

The country's first case was reported by the health ministry last week: a man who had visited Wuhan and was hospitalised on January 10, four days after his return to Japan.

Australia

Australia on Saturday confirmed its first case of the virus, a man who arrived in Melbourne from China a week ago.

Authorities said they were contacting people who had travelled on the same plane from China and offering advice.

Malaysia

Malaysia confirmed its first three cases on Saturday. All are Chinese nationals on holiday from Wuhan who arrived in the country from Singapore two days earlier.

A 66-year-old woman and two boys, aged two and 11, are in a stable condition and are being kept in an isolation ward at a public hospital, Malaysia's health minister said.

Nepal

Nepal said a 32-year-old man arriving from Wuhan had the deadly disease.

The patient, who was initially quarantined, recovered and was discharged. The government said that surveillance has been increased at the airport "and suspicious patients entering Nepal are being monitored".

Singapore

Singapore has announced at least three cases -- a 66-year-old man and his 37-year-old son, who arrived in Singapore on Monday from Wuhan, and a 52-year-old Wuhan woman, who arrived in the city-state on Tuesday.

South Korea

South Korea confirmed its second case of the virus on Friday. 

The health ministry said a South Korean man in his 50s started experiencing symptoms while working in Wuhan on Jan 10. He was tested after his return earlier this week, and the virus was confirmed.

The country reported its first case on January 20 -- a 35-year-old woman who flew in from Wuhan.

Both remain in treatment and are in stable conditions.

Taiwan

Taiwan has uncovered three cases so far. It has since advised against travel to Wuhan and Hubei province and on Friday said any arrivals from Wuhan would be rejected by immigration. 

All arrivals from the rest of China -- including Hong Kong and Macau -- must fill out health declaration forms on arrival. 

It has also banned the export of face masks for a month to ensure domestic supplies. 

Thailand

Thailand has detected four cases so far -- three Chinese nationals from Wuhan and a 73-year-old Thai woman who came back from the Chinese city this month.

Two of the Chinese patients were treated, and have since recovered and travelled back to China, the Thai health ministry said this week.

United States

On Tuesday US health officials announced the country's first case, a man in his 30s living near Seattle. On Friday a second case was announced -- a woman in her 60s living in Chicago. 

Both were treated and are recovering.

Vietnam

Vietnam confirmed two cases of the virus on Thursday. An infected man from Wuhan travelled to Ho Chi Minh City earlier this month and passed the virus on to his son. 

Both are being treated in hospital and are stable, Vietnam health officials said.
Jan 25, 2020 09:52 (IST)
Malaysia Confirms First Cases Of Coronavirus Infection

Malaysia on Saturday said it had confirmed three cases of coronavirus infection, the first in the Southeast Asian country.

Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad said the three individuals infected were Chinese nationals and related to the 66-year-old man that was confirmed by Singapore health authorities to have tested positive for the virus. (Reuters)
Jan 25, 2020 08:47 (IST)
Shanghai Shuts Down All Cinemas During Lunar New Year Holidays

Shanghai has shut down all cinemas during the Lunar New Year holidays, which last until Jan, the Liberation Daily said on its online channel. 

A virus outbreak in China has prompted seven Chinese films that were set to premiere during the country's Lunar New Year holiday to postpone screenings, forgoing what is usually the best week of the year at the Chinese box office.China has confirmed 1,287 cases of patients infected with the new coronavirus, with 41 deaths.

The virus originated in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in Hubei late last year and has spread to Chinese cities including Beijing and Shanghai, as well as the United States, Thailand, South Korea and Japan. (Reuters)
Jan 25, 2020 08:41 (IST)
Doctor At Hospital In China's Hubei Province Dies From Coronavirus

A doctor at a hospital in China's Hubei province, the centre of the coronavirus outbreak, has died from the virus, China Global Television Network reported in a tweet.

Liang Wudong, a doctor at Hubei Xinhua Hospital who had been at the front line of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan city, died from the virus aged 62, it said. (Reuters)

Jan 25, 2020 08:39 (IST)
China Deploys 450 Military Medical Staff To Wuhan

China has deployed 450 military medical staff, some with experience combating SARS or Ebola, to a central city stricken by a virus that has killed dozens of people, state media said Saturday.

The medics, who arrived in Wuhan on military aircraft late Friday, will be dispatched to hospitals with large numbers of infected patients, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

The move marks a dramatic escalation in the central government's involvement to contain the virus, which has killed 41 people and infected 1,287 others across the country. (AFP)

Jan 25, 2020 07:59 (IST)
China's Haikou city, capital of the southern island province of Hainan, will start a 14-day centralised medical observation for tourists from the central Hubei province, centre of the coronavirus outbreak, from Saturday at noon, the Haikou government said, news agency Reuters reported.
Jan 25, 2020 07:55 (IST)
China Wuhan Cornavirus Outbreak: Gloomy Lunar New Year Holiday For China
China marked its most important holiday under a cloud of fear and gloom Saturday as the toll from a deadly respiratory virus jumped to 41, with almost 1,300 people now known to be infected, news agency AFP reports.

The Lunar New Year is normally China's most festive time, but holiday observances across the country have been cancelled and citizens advised to hunker down in isolation at home, with over a dozen cities under lockdown.
Jan 25, 2020 07:54 (IST)
First Confirmed Case Of Wuhan Coronavirus In Australia
Australia today confirmed first case of Wuhan cornavirus, with the patient hospitalized in a stable condition in a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria health officials said on Saturday, news agency Reuters reports. The Chinese national, in his 50s, arrived from China on January 19 on a flight from Guangzhou. Read here
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