Experts have warned that the spread of coronavirus is accelerating as the death toll from the outbreak has now topped 100, with more than 4,500 cases in mainland China, CNN reports.
Amidst the growing fear on the spread of the disease to other parts of the world, China has accelerated a lockdown of many cities in the country.
The disease which was first discovered in Wuhan city in China in December has been exported to 11 other countries.
Cases have also been confirmed in every province and territory, except Tibet which has announced an indefinite closure of all tourist attractions and mandatory two-week quarantine for all travellers entering the region.
The numbers of suspected and confirmed cases have been on a daily rise and informed the country’s decision to lock down some of its major cities. Nearly 60 million people are under partial or full lockdowns in Chinese cities.
Despite the lockdown, cases of human to human transmission of the disease have now been confirmed. China’s health minister, Ma Xiaowei, had earlier said people can spread the virus before symptoms show, but U.S. experts are saying there is no clear evidence to prove it.
When the disease first broke out, there was uncertainty on if the disease could be transmitted through a human host.
Authorities in Hubei, the Chinese province at the centre of the outbreak, earlier said an additional 1,300 cases had been confirmed, bringing the total in the region to over 2,700.
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CNN reports that the majority of those are still in hospital, with more than 125 in critical condition.
Situation report from the World Health Organisation (WHO), on Monday, showed that there was an astronomical rise in the number of reported in China. Between Sunday and Monday, there was a 65 per cent jump in the number of reported cases in the mainland in China from 2,700 to over 4,500.
With the continual rise of confirmed cases in the country, China’s National Health Commission (NHC), said an additional 1,800 medical personnel has been deployed to Hubei province to help ease the burden on hospital staff who have been struggling to cope with the number of coronavirus patients.
It said 13 teams will be deployed to the province’s main seven cities, including Wuhan, Huanggang, Xianning, Xiaogan, Xiantao, Tianmen and Qianjiang. They will be reinforcing the 30 teams (4,130) medical staff already there.
As at Monday, China’s National Health Commission said that 10,261 people visited these hospitals, of which 377 stayed for further observation.
The commission said Wuhan has a capacity of 13,000 beds. These include in two hospitals that are still under construction.
“People who do not show symptoms still have the ability to transmit the disease to others, according to the NHC, which added that the coronavirus can be transmitted through contact as well as droplets, it said.
Media houses across China have also joined in enlightenment campaign as most of the television stations are expected to cut down entertainment programming, including popular variety show, to air more reports on the outbreak.
A statement credited to the National Radio and Television Administration on Tuesday said the move comes as the country steps up efforts to contain the spread of the virus.
Officials in China have also cracked down on the trade of wild animals which is believed to be the primary host of the virus.
China has been working with the international community to find a solution to the outbreak.
As it stands, some countries such as the US and Japan have concluded plans to lift some of their citizens out of China. Also, Hong Kong has temporarily closed some of its borders with China. It also said travel permits to mainland Chinese tourists will stop being issued.
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