September 19, 2020
Foreign

Coronavirus: Death Toll Rises as Virus Spreads to Every Chinese Region

Corona Virus: Death Toll Rises as Virus Spreads to Every Chinese Region

The death toll from the Corona Virus outbreak has risen to 170, and a confirmed case in Tibet means it has reached every region in mainland China.

Chinese Health Authorities said there were 7,711 confirmed cases in the country as of 29 January.

Infections have also spread to at least 15 other countries.

The World Health Organization (WHO) will meet on Thursday to again consider whether the virus constitutes a global health emergency.

“In the last few days the progress of the virus, especially in some countries, especially human-to-human transmission, worries us,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Wednesday.

According to reports, more people have now been infected in China than during the Sars outbreak in the early 2000s, but the death toll remains far lower. Sars, also a Corona Virus, caused acute respiratory illness.

Researchers are racing to develop a vaccine to protect people from the virus. One lab in California has plans for a potential vaccine to enter human trials by June or July.

Voluntary evacuations of hundreds of foreign nationals from Wuhan are under way to help people who want to leave the closed-off city and return to their countries.

The UK, Australia, South Korea, Singapore and New Zealand are expected to quarantine all evacuees for two weeks to monitor them for symptoms and avoid any contagion.

The virus is affecting China’s economy, the worlds second-largest, with a growing number of countries advising their citizens to avoid all non-essential travel to the country.

Report says several international airlines have stopped or scaled back their routes to China and companies like Google, Ikea, Starbucks and Tesla have closed their shops or stopped operations.

There have been reports of food shortages in some places. State media says authorities are “stepping up efforts to ensure continuous supply and stable prices”.

The Chinese Football Association has announced the postponement of all games in the 2020 season

People who have been in Hubei are also being told by their employers to work from home until it is considered safe for them to return.

It would be recalled that the virus is thought to have emerged from illegally traded wildlife at a seafood market in Wuhan, where most cases and deaths have been reported.

But the earliest documented case, which has been traced back to 1 December, had no connection to the market.

Most of the confirmed cases involve people who are from Wuhan or had close contact with someone who had been there.

Bbc News

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