A nurse wearing a protective suit and face mask treating the sick in Wuhan has claimed that 90,000 people have already been infected by the coronavirus in China – far more than the figure of just 1,975 issued by government officials.
Her warning from the heart of the outbreak emerged as the Chinese government faced accusations of censoring criticism of its handling of the disease in order to play down the crisis.
The outbreak of the new virus originated in China, where it has infected more than 1,970 people and killed 56, and has spread worldwide.
Speaking in video footage seen online, the unnamed woman says: ‘I’m in the area where the coronavirus started. I’m here to tell the truth. At this moment, Hubei province, including Wuhan area, even China, 90,000 people have been infected by coronavirus.’
The unnamed woman issued the warning in a social media video, saying she is working in Hubei province which includes the Wuhan area
The woman also advised everyone in Wuhan not to go outside, in order to avoid them being infected with the virus, and asked for more equipment to be sent to the city
Chinese President Xi Jinping, saying the country is facing a grave situation, held a politburo meeting on measures to fight the outbreak, state television reported on Saturday.
The country is facing a ‘grave situation’ where the coronavirus is “accelerating its spread,” Xi told the meeting, which took place on the Lunar New Year public holiday.
Despite China being initially praised for its transparency in managing the situation, critics have now claimed that officials are scrubbing the internet of videos that reveal the true situation.
However, the nurse’s report has been viewed almost two million times on YouTube. In the footage, she warns people not to go outside and to refrain from celebrating the Chinese New Year.
She said: ‘I would like to say that everyone who is currently watching this video should not go outside. Don’t party. Do not eat out. Once a year, we celebrate Chinese New Year. If you are safe now, you will be able to meet your family again healthy next year.’
Making a desperate plea for supplies, she said: ‘We don’t care what the government says. I will tell you through social media. Everyone, please donate masks, glasses and clothes to Wuhan.
‘Please help us. Please donate disposable goggles, disposable masks and disposable clothing. Currently our resources are not enough.’
In this Friday, Jan. 24, 2020, photo released by China’s Xinhua News Agency, a medical worker attends to a patient in the intensive care unit at Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei Province
China’s government has faced criticism for censoring the number infected. Pictured above is the Wuhan Huanan South China seafood market where it is believed coronavirus may have made the jump to humans
A patient is treated for coronavirus in Wuhan Red Cross Hospital today. Sufferers have reportedly collapsed in the street due to the infection
Horrifying clips have been posted online by shocked citizens only to be deleted shortly after. In one, the sick are seen sitting between drips and oxygen tanks next to three dead bodies covered in white sheets. The footage was deleted from social media channel Weibo.
Last week, in rare public dissent, a senior journalist at a Hubei provincial newspaper run by the ruling Communist Party called for an ‘immediate’ change of leadership in Wuhan on Weibo. The post was later removed.
The People’s Daily, a state-owned newspaper, posted a video of an apparently cured patient flashing the peace sign alongside four medics.
But the Global Times revealed that vital resources, including masks and goggles, were urgently needed.
Critics have also claimed that many health experts who would have been able to warn the government at an early stage of the dangers of coronavirus have been detained or had their research stopped because they were not working within the Chinese state.
The accusations of a cover-up echo the furore surrounding the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) epidemic in 2002 when the government concealed the existence of the illness not just from the outside world but from its own people.
This map shows all the areas where coronavirus has been identified so far, including Canada
A patient on a drip in the intensive care unit of Zhongnan Hospital at the University of Wuhan
Cities across the United States and Canada are on high alert amid the escalating coronavirus crisis as 63 people in 22 states are suspected to have contracted the deadly strain. The map above shows confirmed and suspected cases in the US and Canada
An Illinois woman has confirmed to have contracted coronavirus and is being treated at St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estate, Illinois (seen above on Saturday)
Newspapers were forbidden from reporting the disease other than occasional statements from government officials reassuring the public there was nothing to worry about.
The state put such effort into suppressing negative headlines that when an ill traveller from Guangdong arrived in Beijing, doctors had no idea what he was suffering from.
Cities across the US are on high alert as two coronavirus cases are confirmed in Chicago and Washington, 63 people are tested in 22 states and 1,000 American citizens are told to evacuate Ground Zero in Wuhan
Cities across America are on high alert amid the escalating coronavirus crisis as 63 people in 22 states are suspected to have contracted the deadly strain.
Two cases have been confirmed in the US but officials have said they expect that number to grow as dozens more people are being tested for the virus that’s sickened more than 1,400 and killed 42 in at least 12 countries.
Surges in medical mask sales have been seen in areas where possible cases have been reported as people do what they can to avoid contracting the disease, which experts say may be spread as easily as the common cold.
Extra precautions are being taken at airports nationwide as all passengers inbound from Wuhan, the Chinese city where the outbreak originated in late December, are being funneled to five major hubs for screening.
The US government has also ordered evacuations for some 1,000 citizens and diplomats in Wuhan.
The city, which has a population of around 11 million, has been under quarantine since Thursday as officials try to slow the spread of the virus traced back to a seafood market where wildlife was allegedly sold illegally.
Tensions have been high at US airports as travelers worry about exposure to the virus in such a high-traffic, confined environment. Staff at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago are seen wearing face masks on Friday
Last week, US officials began funneling all passengers arriving in the US from Wuhan on direct or connecting flights through five major airports – including O’Hare (pictured) to ensure that they are screened
Passengers are seen arriving at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago on Friday
Screenings are also in place at Los Angeles International Airport. A staff member is seen wearing a face mask at LAX on Friday
Both of the American patients already diagnosed with the disease – a man in his 30s in Washington state and a 60-year-old woman in Chicago – has recently traveled to Wuhan. They are being held in isolation at hospitals and are said to be recovering well.
It appears that all of the patients currently awaiting test results after showing symptoms consistent with the virus – such as fever, cough and runny nose – had either visited Wuhan recently or were in contact with someone who visited the city.
Those patients are believed to have all been isolated either in hospitals or in their homes to reduce the risk of exposing others.
US health officials warned on Friday that the flu or other respiratory illnesses could complicate efforts to identify additional cases.
CONFIRMED US CORONAVIRUS CASES
1. Man in Washington state
The first US coronavirus case was confirmed on Tuesday, January 21.
The patient – a Washington man in his 30s who lives in Snohomish County – has been quarantined at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett, outside of Seattle.
The man had had traveled by himself from Wuhan but did not visit any of the markets at the epicenter of the outbreak.
He reportedly had no symptoms upon arrival in the US on January 15, but after reading about the outbreak online and developing symptoms, he contacted his doctor.
The patient allegedly sought treatment on January 16 and was tested the following day.
He is said to be in stable condition. He is being treated in a bio-containment room by a few staff members and a robot to limit the spread of the virus.
The robot has a stethoscope attached to take the man’s vitals and a large screen so doctors can communicate with him, Dr George Diaz, chief of the infectious disease division at the Providence Regional Medical Center, told CNN.
‘The nursing staff in the room move the robot around so we can see the patient in the screen, talk to him,’ Dr Diaz told the network.
Officials have also been monitoring more than a dozen people the man reportedly came into contact with in the five days between when he arrived back in the US and when he was diagnosed.
2. Woman in Chicago
The CDC confirmed the second US case on Friday – a 60-year-old woman in Chicago, Illinois, who had traveled to Wuhan in late December.
The woman, who has not been named, arrived at O’Hare International Airport on January 13 but did not begin experiencing symptoms until several days later.
Health officials say the woman appears to be ‘well’ and in stable condition.
She is in isolation at a hospital in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
‘We’re really working to understand the full spectrum of the illness with this coronavirus,’ Dr Nancy Messonnier, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases Messonnier, said at a briefing.
‘The problem with this time of year is it’s cold and flu season and there are lots of cold and respiratory infections circulating.’
The CDC has recommended that anyone with symptoms contact a health-care provider before seeking treatment so the appropriate precautionary measures can be put in place.
The agency is trying to expedite screenings by providing up tests to state health officials.
It currently takes the CDC about four to six hours to make a diagnosis once a sample arrives at its lab.
Two people from Minnesota and three people from Michigan are currently being tested.
The patients from Michigan have reportedly agreed to remain in isolation until their tests results return, the Detroit Free Press reported.
Also being monitored are two college students, one from Texas A&M University and another from Tennessee Tech University.
The Tennessee Department of Health said it decided to test the TTU student because he or she had ‘very mild symptoms’ and had a recent concerning travel history that met the criteria for testing.
No results have been confirmed and the student is being kept in isolation.
For the Texas student, Brazos County Health District officials said the male had ‘mild’ symptoms that resembled the coronavirus and had traveled to Wuhan recently.
Results of tests will be announced to the public if the patient tests positive for coronavirus.
Officials said the patient is currently being kept isolated at home and that it is safe for student to attend classes.
‘This patient did travel to the area of concern in China within the last 14 days and thankfully had mild upper respiratory symptoms, and he was improving,’ said Dr Eric Wilke with the Brazos County Health Department.
‘I believe the time the patient presented at the emergency department, it was more out of concern,’ said Dr Eric Wilke with the Brazos County Health Department.
Medical supply stores around the Brazos Valley, where Texas A&M is located, are reportedly experiencing a medical mask shortage after the possible case was reported.
Genese Smith, who works at MediCare Equipment in Bryan, just a few miles off campus, told KBTX that an influx of customers came to the store looking for masks on Thursday.
‘Within about 30 minutes of word getting out, we started getting phone calls asking if we have the masks, what kind of masks did we have, and how many we had available,’ Smith said. ‘Quite a few people started coming in, asking, and purchasing.’
Smith said the store typically stocks about 50 masks but has already ordered more.
Other stores in the area, including Texas A&M’s Health Services Department, are also awaiting new shipments of masks after their current stocks ran out, per KBTX.
President Trump thanked President Xi Jinping and China for its ‘transparency’ in fighting coronavirus on Twitter Friday
In California, Los Angeles International Airport has been on high alert after a passenger who arrived on Wednesday was sent to hospital after he or she appeared to be ill.
The unnamed passenger arrived on an American Airlines flight from Mexico City around 7pm, CBS Los Angeles reported.
However, it remains unclear if the passenger is from Mexico City, or if they originated from another city.
Several people in the state, particularly in Alameda County and the Bay Area, are also being examined to see if they have the virus that resembles SARS.
On Friday, North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services also reported that it is investigating a case.
The suspected patient arrived at Raleigh-Durham International Airport on January 23 after having traveled to Wuhan but not to the seafood market to which many early cases have been linked, according to a news release.
Officials are planning to temporarily shutter the US Consulate General in Wuhan (pictured)
Four other potential cases are also under investigation in New York state.
In Colorado, a patient with respiratory symptoms was placed in isolation at Lakewood’s Centura – St. Anthony Hospital after they were found to have recently traveled to Wuhan.
The hospital said it could be several days for coronavirus test results to come back from the CDC, but public health risk is considered low at this time.
Coronavirus: What we know so far
What is this virus?
The virus has been identified as a new type of coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a large family of pathogens, most of which cause mild respiratory infections such as the common cold.
But coronaviruses can also be deadly. SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, is caused by a coronavirus and killed hundreds of people in China and Hong Kong in the early 2000s.
Can it kill?
Yes. Seventeen people have so far died after testing positive for the virus.
What are the symptoms?
Its symptoms are typically a fever, cough and trouble breathing, but some patients have developed pneumonia, a potentially life-threatening infection that causes inflammation of the small air sacs in the lungs. People carrying the novel coronavirus may only have mild symptoms, such as a sore throat. They may assume they have a common cold and not seek medical attention, experts fear.
How is it detected?
The virus’s genetic sequencing was released by scientists in China to the rest of the world to enable other countries to quickly diagnose potential new cases. This helps other countries respond quickly to disease outbreaks.
To contain the virus, airports are detecting infected people with temperature checks. But as with every virus, it has an incubation period, meaning detection is not always possible because symptoms have not appeared yet.
How did it start and spread?
The first cases identified were among people connected to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan.
Cases have since been identified elsewhere which could have been spread through human-to-human transmission.
What are countries doing to prevent the spread?
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.
Is it similar to anything we’ve ever seen before?
Experts have compared it to the 2003 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The epidemic started in southern China and killed more than 700 people in mainland China, Hong Kong and elsewhere
In Washington state, where the first US case was confirmed, the Northwest Chinese school in Bellevue called off weekend classes for preschoolers through adults amid concerns about the virus.
‘We take the health of our students and families very seriously and think that this is the best course of action,’ officials wrote in an email announcing the cancelled classes.
On the University of Washington’s Seattle campus, a Chinese student association has been distributing face masks and asking students to contribute to efforts to send supplies such as face masks and protective suits to China.
Tensions have been high at US airports as travelers worry about exposure to the virus in such a high-traffic, confined environment.
Last week, US officials began funneling all passengers arriving in the US from Wuhan on direct or connecting flights through five major airports to ensure that they are screened.
Public health entry screenings are currently taking place Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, John F Kennedy International Airport in New York and San Francisco International Airport.
The screening begins with a survey to determine whether a traveler shows possible coronavirus symptoms and whether they visited the meat or seafood markets in Wuhan that have been tied to the outbreak.
If they appear to have any symptoms associated with coronavirus, travelers are taken to on-site triage for further examination and a temperature check.
The State Department issued its highest travel warning for Wuhan on Thursday, advising Americans to not travel to the region.
The level 4 warning puts the city on par with countries such as Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, North Korea, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.
The US government is also working to prevent American exposure abroad by bringing home all US citizens currently in Wuhan.
The US consulate is reportedly reaching out to all Americans registered as living in Wuhan – considered to be the epicenter of the deadly outbreak – to offer them a seat on a charter flight scheduled for Sunday.
A source familiar with the operation told CNN that roughly 1,000 Americans live in Wuhan, and those who choose to evacuate will be forced to pay for their spot on the Boeing 767 jet, which carries around 230 people.
The US evacuation was first reported by the Wall Street Journal, citing an official source.
However, another source who spoke to CNN disputed the Wall Street Journal’s claim that any available seats may be offered to non-US citizens and diplomats from other countries, saying that non-US citizens would only be allowed onboard if they are related or married to Americans.
It is understood medical personnel will be on the flight to care for anyone who may have been infected by the virus and prevent it from spreading.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said it is involved in the efforts to help Americans leave Wuhan.
‘Department of State has the lead for the safe and expedient ordered departure of all US citizens from Wuhan, China,’ CDC spokeswoman Kristen Nordlund told CNN. ‘CDC is aware and coordinating in the planning.’
Washington was given approval for the operation from China’s Foreign Ministry and other government agencies following negotiations in recent days.
The US also plans to temporarily shut its Wuhan consulate, it said.
In a tweet on Friday, President Donald Trump thanked President Xi Jinping and China for its ‘transparency’ in fighting coronavirus.
‘China has been working very hard to contain the Coronavirus. The United States greatly appreciates their efforts and transparency. It will all work out well. In particular, on behalf of the American People, I want to thank President Xi!’ Trump wrote.
Canada hospital says it has confirmed case of deadly virus
A Toronto hospital said Saturday it has a confirmed case of the deadly virus from China, Canada’s first.
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre said it is ‘caring for a patient who has a confirmed case of the novel coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China.’
Officials said the man is his 50s and recently flew from Wuhan, China to Guangzhou, China and then on to Toronto on January 23.
‘He really wasn’t in Toronto very long. He wasn’t feeling well. I think he was at home and the people that live with him are in self isolation,’ said Dr. Barbara Yaffe, Ontario’s Associated Chief Medical Officer.
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre said it is ‘caring for a patient who has a confirmed case of the novel coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China.’ Officials said the man is his 50s and recently flew from Wuhan, China to Guangzhou, China and then on to Toronto on January 23
People waiting for passengers wear masks at Pearson airport arrivals, shortly after Toronto Public Health received notification of Canada’s first presumptive confirmed case of coronavirus, in Toronto
Travelers are seen above wearing masks at the arrival hall at Pearson airport in Toronto on Saturday
After the first presumptive case was announced, Toronto Mayor John Tory said health officials say the risk to the public is low
In Canada, while the case has been confirmed by a test in Toronto, officials said it has yet to complete separate testing by the federal government’s National Collaborating Centre for Infectious Diseases in Winnipeg.
The illness will officially be fully confirmed once it completes that testing.
Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, said they are 95 per cent sure it is the virus.
‘This is the first presumptive confirmed case,’ said Williams.
‘While we are convinced our tests do demonstrate positivity there is confirmation at the national medical laboratory in Winnipeg and once that is done is is a fully confirmed case.’
The man is now in stable condition in isolation. He was admitted to hospital a day after his flight to Toronto.
Mayor John Tory said health officials say the risk to the public is low.
Xi warns of ‘grave situation’ as killer coronavirus accelerates, doctor dies and US evacuates its citizens from hotspot Wuhan after death toll jumps to 42 with 1,372 cases and 56 million on lockdown
The deadly coronavirus is ‘accelerating’ and China is facing a ‘grave situation’, the country’s president has said – as at least one doctor has died from the virus and the US prepares to evacuate citizens from crisis-hit Wuhan.
The virus-hit Chinese city of Wuhan, already on lockdown and where the virus is thought to have originated, banned most vehicle use downtown and Hong Kong said it would close schools for two weeks as authorities scramble to stop the spread of an illness that has infected more than 1,400 people worldwide and killed 42.
Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke following an emergency government meeting to warn that the spread of the killer virus is worsening, as video emerged showing medics collapsing at hospitals in the capital of central China’s Hubei province as the coronavirus outbreak continues to move across the world.
As of 8 pm local time (1200 GMT) on Saturday, the death toll in China had risen to 42, authorities reported. Some 1,372 people in China had been infected with the virus – traced to a seafood market in Wuhan that was illegally selling wildlife.
The virus has also been detected in Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Nepal, and the United States.
China’s president Xi Jinping has warned the virus is accelerating as Chinese cities remains on lock down. A patient is pictured above being rushed to Red Cross hospital in Wuhan today. People have been pictured lying in the street after collapsing
Coronavirus is now reported to have infected more than 1,280 people in several countries. (Medical staff wearing protective gear in Wuhan Red Cross Hospital today)
Passengers pictured arriving at Heathrow airport wearing face masks. The virus has not yet reached the UK, according to medical professionals, although cases have been recorded in neighbouring France
People wearing face masks to help stop the spread of a deadly virus which began in the city, are seen at Wuhan Red Cross Hospital in Wuhan (pictured, patients line up along the corridor)
China’s President Xi Jinping addressed the nation today (pictured) and said: ‘It is necessary to strengthen the centralised and unified leadership of the Party Central Committee’
State-run China Global Television Network reported in a tweet that a doctor who had been treating patients in Wuhan, 62-year-old Liang Wudong (left), had died from the virus. It was not immediately clear if his death was already counted in the official toll of 56, of which at least 39 were in the central province of Hubei, where Wuhan is located (right, doctors donning white boiler suits treat patients at Wuhan Central Hospital)
Photos from inside the intensive care unit at Zhongnan Hospital in Wuhan show medical workers caring for critically-ill patients this week
‘Faced with the grave situation of an accelerating spread of the new coronavirus […] it is necessary to strengthen the centralised and unified leadership of the Party Central Committee,’ Xi said, according to official news agency Xinhua.
It comes as Liang Wudong, 62, who had been treating patients in Wuhan, died from the virus this morning, state-run China Global Television Network reported.
Wudong, who was retired but drafted in to help with the outbreak, died after time spent treating patients. It was also reported that another doctor, Jiang Jijun, has died from a heart attack while treating the afflicted.
It is unknown if the infectious disease specialist, who has treated bird flu and influenza A and tuberculosis over the years, died as a result of coronavirus or from exhaustion.
And the US, which has around 1,000 citizens in the city, is set to evacuate those it knows about – including diplomats – on a 230 seater charter flight tomorrow.
The US government won approval for the operation from China’s Foreign Ministry and other government agencies following negotiations in recent days, The Wall Street Journal reports. The British Foreign Ministry is yet to confirm whether it will do the same.
Also today, distressing video has emerged showing a doctor collapsing on the floor as footage revealed the full scale of panic inside Wuhan hospitals, with crowded corridors and patients slumped on the floor.
Video shows staff shouting at patients to calm themselves as medics desperately try to contain the situation. Some workers are reported to be wearing diapers as they don’t have time to use the toilet amid the panic.
Some 56 million people are now subject to restrictions on their movement as authorities expand travel bans in central Hubei province, now affecting 18 cities.
Other shocking developments in the outbreak today include:
- China’s National Health Commission said it had formed six medical teams totalling 1,230 medical staff to help
- Videos from inside Chinese hospitals show patients crammed into overcrowded corridors and laid on the floor
- Global airports have stepped up screening of passengers from China, though some have questioned its worth
- China says virus is mutating and can be transmitted through human contact, mostly affecting the frail and old
- Shanghai has shut all cinemas until 30 January in a desperate bid to try and stop the spread of the killer virus
- Wuhan will impose ban on non-essential vehicles in downtown area from January 26 to contain virus outbreak
- Hong Kong declares a virus emergency announcing a series of measures to limit city’s links with mainland China
- Starbucks said it was closing all outlets in Hubei province, following a similar move by McDonald’s in five cities
- Yum China Holdings Inc said it has temporarily closed some of its KFC and Pizza Hut stores in Wuhan as a result
- All overseas group tour services, including hotel and plane bookings, from Chinese travel firms to be suspended
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam has declared a virus emergency in the Asian financial hub, announcing a package of measures to limit the city’s links with mainland China.
Schools, now on Lunar New Year holidays, would remain shut until February 17, while inbound and outbound flights and high speed rail trips between Hong Kong and Wuhan would be halted.
China’s National Health Commission has announced it had formed six medical teams totalling 1,230 medical staff to help Wuhan. Three of the six teams, from Shanghai, Guangdong and military hospitals have arrived in Wuhan.
Did China pressure World Health Organisation not to declare international emergency?
China’s status as a major superpower may have influenced the World Health Organisation’s decision not to declare coronavirus an international emergency, experts have warned.
More than 1,300 people have been infected globally with the virus traced to a seafood market in the central city of Wuhan that was illegally selling wildlife.
Despite this, the WHO has failed to declare a global health crisis. On Thursday the organisation said it was ‘too early’ for such a decision but added an emergency could still be declared if the outbreak continues to spread.
‘This should not be taken as a sign that we don’t think the outbreak is serious, or that we are not taking it seriously,’ said WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
‘Nothing could be further from the truth.’
Now, baffled experts have warned that their decision may have been influenced by China.
Yanzhong Huang, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations, told The Daily Telegraph: ‘The criteria for declaring a public health emergency of international concern have been met.’
But ‘not all WHO decisions are made based on the developments in the biological world,’ he added.
China will suspend both domestic and overseas Chinese group tours, state media reported today, as it ramps up efforts to contain the new SARS-like virus.
Starting on Monday, all overseas group tour services, including hotel and plane ticket bookings, from Chinese travel agencies will be suspended, according to state broadcaster CCTV. Domestic tour groups were suspended from Friday, it said.
Wuhan, a city of 11 million, has been in virtual lockdown since Thursday, with nearly all flights at the airport cancelled and checkpoints blocking the main roads leading out of town. Authorities have since imposed transport restrictions on nearly all of Hubei province, which has a population of 59 million.
In Beijing today, workers in white protective suits checked temperatures of passengers entering the subway at the central railway station, while some train services in eastern China’s Yangtze River Delta region were suspended, the local railway operator said.
The number of confirmed cases in China stands at 1,287, the National Health Commission said today.
U.S. coffee chain Starbucks said on Saturday that it was closing all its outlets in Hubei province for the week-long Lunar New Year holiday, following a similar move by McDonald’s in five Hubei cities.
Yum China Holdings Inc said it has temporarily closed some of its KFC and Pizza Hut stores in Wuhan in response to the coronavirus outbreak in the Chinese city.
‘We will continue to evaluate the need for additional actions and preventive health measures,’ Yum China said in an emailed statement.
The virus has also been detected in Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Nepal, Malaysia, France, the United States and Australia.
Australia on Saturday announced its first case of coronavirus, a Chinese national in his 50s, who had been in Wuhan and arrived from China on Jan. 19 on a flight from Guangzhou. He is in stable condition in a Melbourne hospital.
‘Given the number of cases that have been found outside of China and the significant traffic from Wuhan city in the past to Australia, it was not unexpected that we would get some cases,’ Australia’s Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy told a news conference.
‘This is the first confirmed case. There are other cases being tested each day, many of them are negative, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we had further confirmed cases.’
Medical staff members wearing protective clothing to help stop the spread of a deadly virus which began in the city, walk at the Wuhan Red Cross Hospital in China
The new virus comes from a large family of what are known as coronaviruses, some causing nothing worse than a cold. It causes cold- and flu-like symptoms, including cough and fever and, in more severe case, shortness of breath. It can worsen to pneumonia, which can be fatal. Most of China’s provinces and cities activated a Level 1 public health alert, the highest in a four-tier system, the state-owned China Daily newspaper reported Saturday (pictured, medics at Wuhan Red Cross Hospital)
The world’s most populous country scrambled to contain the disease that has already infected nearly 1,300 people, building a second field hospital to relieve overwhelmed medical facilities and closing more travel routes as the country marked the Lunar New Year holiday (pictured, residents bulk buy supplies amid the outbreak)
Distressing video has emerged showing a doctor collapsing on the floor as footage revealed the full scale of panic inside Wuhan hospitals, with crowded corridors and patients slumped on the floor. Video shows staff shouting at patients to calm themselves as medics desperately try to contain the situation. Some workers are reported to be wearing diapers as they don’t have time to use the toilet amid the panic
- Beijing tells US to stop 'flexing muscles' in South China Sea as it sends new carrier
- Iranian officials 'stealing bodies' from morgues to hide true scale of government crackdown
- Did indigenous Australians invent bread? Author claims Aboriginal people started making loaves 15,000 years before the Egyptians
- No large-scale retreat of foreign firms from China: commerce ministry
- True scale of German underemployment revealed
- Leung of Hong Kong, China claims silver in men's track cycling omnium at Asiad
- The royal rift continues: 'No one' in the royal family 'is checking in, texting or speaking' to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, source claims to People magazine
- Smartphones and cancer drugs rely on Chinese rare earths. What happens if Beijing limits them?
- Taiwan’s Tsai says China threatens regional peace, stability
- China's big push for its global trade narrative