China confirms 170 Victims: Coronavirus caused more infections than the SARS epidemic

China announcing that the number of deaths due to the coronavirus had risen to 170.

Wuhan Coronavirus 2020.
Wuhan Coronavirus 2020.

Chinese authorities reconfirmed that in 24 hours the number of fatalities had risen giving a total of 170 victims. This surpassed the number of people infected with SARS, the deadly epidemic that between 2002 and 2003 had 5327 people infected.

However, the number of fatalities from the coronavirus is still well below its predecessor: Wuhan Coronavirus reached 170, while SARS left 348 victims.

Coronavirus caused more infections than the SARS virus.
Coronavirus caused more infections than the SARS virus.

In addition to China, where the majority of the sick are reported, the coronavirus is affecting more than 15 countries, which have now been joined by the United Arab Emirates.

As a precaution against the virus, which is believed to have originated in a wildlife market in Wuhan, central China, a quarantined city that is home to more than 11 million people, on-site transportation was limited, schools were closed, businesses asked their workers to perform their duties at home, the permanent use of masks was recommended, the New Year holidays were extended and mass gatherings were banned.

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In parallel, several airlines suspended their flights to mainland China. British Airways announced that it is cancelling all its flights to the Asian giant, the Indonesian Lion Air also cancelled flights, while the Hong Kong Cathay Pacific, the American United Airlines and Air Canada want to reduce the number of departures. 

For its part, the American chain Starbucks announced the closure of half of its cafeterias.

In addition Hong Kong confirmed the closure of six transit points with the rest of China. Kazakhstan also closed its borders due to the outbreak.

Already in the United Arab Emirates

The kingdom detected four people of Chinese nationality infected by the coronavirus, the health ministry said today. The first cases in the Middle East involved members of a family from Wuhan.

They also indicated that the health status of those affected is stable.

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In addition to the United Arab Emirates, the disease has already been reported in several countries, including the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Nepal, France, Germany and the Ivory Coast.

British nationals arriving in the UK from Wuhan, the Chinese city at the epicentre of the new coronavirus outbreak, will be quarantined for two weeks as a precautionary measure.

The decision was communicated by the Minister of Health, Matt Hancock. "Anyone arriving from Wuhan will be safely isolated for 14 days with the necessary medical care," he announced on Twitter. 

The number of Britons in Wuhan is estimated at around 200.

Upon arrival, evacuees will be taken to a safe location, which could be a military base.

The new virus causes cold- and influenza-like symptoms, including coughing and fever, and in the most severe cases, breathing problems and pneumonia. It is believed that people acquired it from wild animals sold in the Wuhan market. 

On Sunday, China temporarily banned the trade in wild animals and called on people to stop eating their meat.