Coronavirus Update: Massive Spike in Cases, New Diagnostic Criteria, Communist Party Official Ousted

By Anna Breuer on 13 February 2020
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Worker wearing mask in open market in China


Chinese health officials in Hubei Province said Thursday morning that there had been 14,840 new cases of the coronavirus and 242 new deaths.  The spike in confirmed cases came after the criteria used to diagnose the virus were broadened.

The death toll is now at least 1,360 and the number of recorded cases in China is 59,493.

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02-13 China changed the diagnostic criteria for the Wuhan coronavirus. The change came about because the specialized testing kits used to detect the coronavirus have been in short supply.  China’s state-run Xinhua news Agency reported that national health authorities updated guidelines to include “clinically diagnosed” coronavirus cases in the confirmed total.  Until now, officials only counted cases confirmed by nucleic acid tests.

02-13 The Chinese Communist Party replaced the highest-ranking official in Hubei Province, Jiang Chaoliang, the party secretary, with Ying Yong, the current mayor of Shanghai.  The move comes after much criticism over the handling over the coronavirus outbreak.

02-13 The Japanese government will allow some passengers to leave the Diamond Princess cruise ship, which has been docked in Yokohama since February 3. Passengers who are 80 years of age or older and test negative for the virus, those with existing medical conditions, and those in cabins without windows or balconies would be taken to facilities on shore for the remainder of the quarantine period, which is slated to end on February 19.  Those who test positive would be taken to area hospitals.

02-13 The Dalai Lama is cancelling all public appearances “as a precautionary measure” due to the coronavirus.  “All engagements of his Holiness the Dalai Lama remain indefinitely postponed,” a statement said.

02-12 The Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, one of the biggest tech trade shows in the world, was cancelled due to “the coronavirus outbreak, travel concern and other circumstances.” Earlier in the week, major exhibitors including Ericsson, Intel, Nokia, and Vodafone, had pulled out.

02-12 United Airlines further extended its temporary suspensions of flights to mainland China and Hong Kong to April 24.The suspension includes non-stop flights from the States to Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai, and Hong Kong.  United originally suspended flights to mainland China at the end of January and to Hong Kong on February 4.


(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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