Number of New Coronavirus Cases Spikes with Expanded Diagnostic Criteria

By Anna Breuer on 12 February 2020
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Empty check-in desks at Chengdu’s airport

Health officials in Hubei Province said Thursday morning that there were 14,840 new cases of the coronavirus and 242 new deaths, after the criteria used to diagnose the virus were broadened.

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

The change in diagnostic criteria 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.

The tests themselves were considered faulty and were the subject of much criticism. Many believed they have resulted in a significant undercount of the total number of cases and thus the magnitude of the epidemic.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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