More people in China have already died from the ongoing coronavirus outbreak than from the SARS epidemic 17 years ago, Chinese officials said. Meanwhile, traces of the disease were spotted on a door handle used by the patient.
The death toll from the previously-unknown coronavirus in China has grown to 361 on Sunday, the country’s National Health Commission said. This number exceeds the 349 fatalities from the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic in mainland China in 2003.
Out of 57 newly reported deaths, 56 were in central Hubei Province, whose capital Wuhan remains the epicenter of the outbreak, and one in the city of Chongqing in China’s southwest. So far, the only death from the virus outside mainland China was registered in the Philippines.
Overall, 17,205 cases of the virus have now been registered in China since the outbreak started in late December.
During a press briefing in Beijing on Monday, Deputy Director of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) Lian Weiliang announced that China will step up measures to supply Wuhan with basic goods as it remains quarantined along with several other major cities.
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