Millennium Post

Coronavirus toll crosses 1K, cases over 42K

Beijing: The death toll in China's novel Coronavirus outbreak has gone up to 1,016 with 108 new fatalities reported mostly in the worst-affected Hubei province while the confirmed cases of infection have soared to 42,638, Chinese health officials said on Tuesday, as a team of international experts led by the WHO arrived in Beijing to help contain the epidemic.

As many as 108 deaths were reported on Monday and 2,478 new cases of the lethal disease confirmed, the National Health Commission said in its daily report.

The death toll due to coronavirus rose to 1,016 and the confirmed cases have gone up to 42,638, according to the commission.

Among the deaths, 103 were in Hubei province, the epicentre of the outbreak, and one each in Beijing, Tianjin, Heilongjiang, Anhui and Henan, state-run Xinhua news agency quoted the commission as saying.

A total of 3,996 patients infected with the coronavirus have been discharged from hospital till Monday after recovery, it said.

On Monday, 3,536 new suspected cases were reported and 849 patients became seriously ill, while 716 people were discharged from hospital after recovery, the commission said.

As many as 7,333 patients remained in severe condition and 21,675 people are suspected of being infected with the virus. Over 4.28 lakh close contacts had been traced and more than 1.87 lakh others are still under medical observation, according to the commission.

By the end of Monday, 42 confirmed cases, including one death, have been reported in Hong Kong, 10 confirmed cases in Macao and 18 in Taiwan. A team of international experts led by the World Health Organisation (WHO) arrived in China on Monday night to assist the Chinese health officials in containing the coronavirus outbreak. The team is led by Bruce Aylward, a veteran of past public health emergencies.

Composed of international experts in various fields, the expert group will work with their Chinese counterparts to increase understanding of the epidemic and guide global responses, state-run People's Daily reported.

China and the WHO will form a joint expert team to conduct in-depth discussions on and evaluations of the novel coronavirus epidemic and the containment, a National Health Commission (NHC) spokesperson said.

They will provide suggestions on joint prevention and control of the coronavirus outbreak to China and other affected countries in the next step, Mi Feng, an official with the NHC, told a news conference in Beijing.

"We welcome international experts including those from the United States to take part in the joint expert team," Mi said, adding that appropriate arrangements for the team would be made after thorough consultation and communication.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, wearing a mask, on Monday toured Beijing city and said China can score a full victory over the epidemic, even as the situation remained "very serious".

Outside China, there have been more than 350 infections reported in almost 30 places with two deaths, one in the Philippines and the other in Hong Kong.

Several countries have banned arrivals from China while major airlines have suspended flights to the country.

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