New Coronavirus Spreads to Over 130 in China, Death Toll Rises

By Ryan Gandolfo, January 20, 2020

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UPDATE (January 20, 2020 12.13pm CST): It has been confirmed that the disease can be transmitted between humans, and medical personnel have been infected while treating people suffering from the new coronavirus, raising concerns about how contagious the virus is.

The Wuhan Municipal Health Commission has confirmed a third death related to the novel coronavirus, as well as 136 new cases since Saturday, January 18.

The latest notice by the Wuhan health commission says that among the patients, 66 are male and 70 are female, ranging from 25 to 89 years old. Symptoms from the newly confirmed cases include coughing, chest pains and fever, in addition to difficulty breathing.

Among the new cases, 100 are reported to be in a stable condition, while 33 patients are seriously ill and three critically ill (including one patient already announced dead).

As of January 19, Wuhan has seen nearly 200 cases of the novel coronavirus, among them 25 have been dispatched from hospital and three have died. Currently, 170 patients are still undergoing treatment, with 126 patients in stable condition, 35 seriously ill and nine patients in critical condition.

READ MORE: Coronavirus Cases Spread to Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen

Epidemiological investigations are currently being carried out for these new cases, with 817 close contacts being monitored for related symptoms.

Outside of Wuhan, suspected cases have been reported in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, as well as confirmed cases in Japan and Thailand.

The Wuhan health commission has not stated whether there is new evidence to suggest that the virus can be transmitted human-to-human, only saying that preliminary investigations found no evidence of a human-to-human transmission route. 

The recent jump in confirmed coronavirus cases is concerning as Chinese New Year quickly approaches, with millions of people traveling around the country this week. A study published last week by Imperial College London’s MRC Center for Global Infectious Disease Analysis estimated that there could be a total of 1,723 novel coronavirus cases in Wuhan, and suggested that human-to-human transmission shouldn’t be ruled out.

Videos have surfaced online today showing passengers on a flight in China being screened for symptoms related to the novel coronavirus.

Screen-Shot-2020-01-20-at-12.48.20-PM.png
Screengrab via Weibo

For anyone traveling during the holiday, click here for a list of tips to reduce your risk of the disease.

READ MORE: 17 New Coronavirus Cases Reported in China

[Cover image via @想个网名好难啊/Weibo]

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