Death Toll in China’s Coronavirus Outbreak Climbs to 1,665
People wearing protective suits stand near an entrance at the Cheung Hong Estate during evacuation of residents in Hong Kong on 11 February. 
People wearing protective suits stand near an entrance at the Cheung Hong Estate during evacuation of residents in Hong Kong on 11 February. (Photo: AP/PTI) 

Death Toll in China’s Coronavirus Outbreak Climbs to 1,665

Death toll in China's coronavirus has gone up to 1,665 after 142 more people died, mostly in the worst-hit Hubei Province, Chinese health officials said on Sunday, 16 February, reported PTI.

Meanwhile, the number of people infected with the deadly new coronavirus on a quarantined ship off Japan has risen to 355, the country's health minister said on Sunday.

The United States, Canada and Hong Kong are preparing to repatriate their residents on board.


  • An 80-year-old Chinese tourist has died from the novel coronavirus in France, the first death confirmed outside of Asia
  • A third Indian crew member on board the quarantined ship in Japan has tested positive for coronavirus, the Indian Embassy in Japan said
  • China has sacked the top political leader of virus-stricken Hubei province, state media reported on Thursday
  • The World Health Organisation said ‘Covid-19’ would be the new official name for the deadly coronavirus that was first identified in China on 31 December
  • The virus is novel, meaning it has never been encountered before in humans

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Coronavirus Death Toll in Hubei Surges by 242 in One Day

The number of fatalities and new cases from China's coronavirus outbreak soared on Thursday with 242 more deaths and nearly 15,000 extra patients in hard-hit Hubei province as authorities changed their threshold for diagnosis.

At least 1,355 people have now died nationwide and nearly 60,000 have been infected after Hubei's health commission reported the new numbers, according to AFP.

In its daily update, Hubei's health commission confirmed another 14,840 new cases in the central province, where the outbreak emerged in December.

The huge jump came as local officials said they were changing the way they diagnose Covid-19 cases.

44 More Coronavirus Cases on Japan Ship: Health Minister

Another 44 people on board a cruise ship moored off Japan's coast have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the country's health minister said on Thursday, reported AFP.

Health Minister Katsunobu Kato said the 44 new cases were from another 221 new tests. They raise the number of infections detected on the Diamond Princess to 218, in addition to a quarantine officer who also tested positive for the virus.

Mobile World Congress 2020 Cancelled Over Coronavirus Concerns

Global telecom industry body GSM Association on Thursday said it has decided to cancel the 2020 edition of the sector's largest event, Mobile World Congress, due to health safety concerns around the coronavirus outbreak.

The industry body has been organising the event annually since 2006 in Barcelona, Spain, where governments, ministers, policymakers, operators and industry leaders across the broader ecosystem discuss developments in technology sector with telecom as a common thread.

China Removes Party Chief of Hubei Province

China has sacked the top political leader of virus-stricken Hubei province, state media reported on Thursday, according to AFP.

Jiang Chaoliang, Hubei's party secretary, will be replaced by Shanghai mayor Ying Yong, according to the official Xinhua news agency, which gave no additional details.

'Indian Embassy in Constant Touch With Crew and Passengers of Diamond Princess': EAM

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar tweeted on Thursday that the Indian Embassy in Japan is in constant touch with the crew and passengers of the cruise ship Diamond Princess “rendering all necessary support and assistance”.

Passenger Onboard Spicejet Flight Quaratined After Landing at Delhi Airport

A passenger onboard SpiceJet's Bangkok-Delhi flight, suspected of coronavirus infection, has been quarantined after landing at Delhi airport, the airline said on Thursday.

2 Passengers Returning From Bangkok Test Positive for Coronavirus at Kolkata Airport

Two passengers who arrived at NSCBI Airport from Bangkok have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, Airports Authority of India officials said on Thursday. Both of them were sent to Beliaghata ID Hospital.

(Note: PTI later issued a correction saying that the two passengers had been placed in isolation for suspected novel coronavirus.)

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan Addresses Media on Coronavirus Situation

Union health Minister Dr harsh Vardhan addressed the media on the Coronavirus situation.

“All 402 people kept in ITBP quarantine facility have tested negative and their condition is stable,” he said.

“Ship Diamond Princess (of Japan) has been quarantined. 2 Indian crew members on board the ship tested positive. The Ministry of External Afrrais is keeping a close watch on it ,” he added.

He also announced that till date, 2,51,447 airport passengers have been screened and screening is also being done at 12 major and 65 minor ports.

PTI Issues Correction Regarding Passengers at Kolkata Airport

Two passengers, who arrived at Kolkata international airport from Bangkok, have been placed in isolation for suspected novel coronavirus, officials said on Thursday. PTI had earlier reported that they tested positive for the virus.

3 Persons in Kerala Tested Positive for Coronavirus Now Stable

Three persons who tested positive for novel coronavirus in Kerala are now stable, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Thursday.

The 645 Indians evacuated from the coronavirus-hit Wuhan city have all tested negative for the virus and discharge guidelines are being issued, he said.

"All the states have been informed about the guidelines and precautionary measures to be taken," Vardhan said.

Indigo Crew Members in Quarantine in Kolkata as Precautionary Measure

IndiGo's eight crew members, who were part of its Kolkata-Guangzhou flight operations, have been in quarantine in Kolkata for the last few days as a precautionary measure against coronavirus, sources said on Thursday, reports PTI.

"Eight crew members - cockpit crew as well as cabin crew - are in quarantine in Kolkata for a period of 14 days as a precautionary measure. They were part of the airline's Kolkata-Guangzhou flight operations," said a source.

Indian, Pakistani Students in Wuhan Panic as Officials Set up Hospitals in Campuses

Indian and Pakistani students in China's Hubei province, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, have made desperate pleas to their governments to evacuate them after Chinese officials decided to convert their university gymnasiums and dormitories into makeshift hospitals amid a big surge in infection cases.

China has already built two make-shift hospitals with 2,300 beds and converted auditorium and stadiums into hospitals. With surging cases university dormitories and gymnasiums are being converted into hospitals

PM Modi Thanks Air India Crew Which Evacuated Indians From Wuhan

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has written a letter of appreciation to the Air India crew and health ministry officials involved in the evacuation of citizens of India and Maldives from the Chinese city of Wuhan following the outbreak of novel coronavirus, the Prime Minister's Office said on Thursday.

The letter would be handed over to the evacuation team, including Air India crew and Health Ministry officials, by the Minister of State for Civil Aviation, the PMO statement said.

Europe Worried About Medicine Stocks as Coronavirus Spreads

European health ministers expressed concern about stocks of medicine and medical supplies on Thursday and urged EU member states to work together against the new coronavirus outbreak.

The ministers called for increased vigilance and cooperation to help track and halt the virus, and to organise the joint procurement of medical supplies.

A statement urged "enhanced coordination between Member States to ensure effectiveness of all measures, including, if necessary, measures regarding travel, while safeguarding free movement within the EU."

No Major Change in 'Trajectory' of Coronavirus Outbreak: WHO

The UN health agency on Thursday said a sharp rise in reported Coronavirus cases in China, due to a change in counting methods, did not represent a big shift in the epidemic.

"This does not represent a significant change in the trajectory of the outbreak," Michael Ryan, head of the WHO's health emergencies programme, said at a press conference.

Student Who Tested Positive for Coronavirus Discharged

A Keralite student from Wuhan University, who tested positive for the novel coronavirus thereby becoming the country's second such case, was on Thursday discharged from the isolation ward of Alappuzha Medical college hospital, health department sources said.

The youth was discharged after his two consecutive samples sent for testing at the National Institute of Virology, Pune, turned out negative.

China Virus Death Toll Nears 1,500 But New Cases Fall

The death toll from China's coronavirus epidemic rose to 1,483 on Friday,14 February but the number of new infections in hard-hit Hubei province fell after a change in case definitions caused a massive increase the previous day, reported PTI.

The central province's health commission reported 116 more deaths and 4,823 new cases, the majority involving "clinically diagnosed" patients.

The province, the epicentre of the outbreak, had 242 more deaths and over 14,800 new cases on Thursday.

More than 64,600 people have now been infected in the country.

‘All 3 Patients Confirmed to Have Fully Recovered’: Kerala Minister

Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac tweeted on Friday, saying that “all three patients identified (in Kerala) have been confirmed by central authorities to have fully recovered” and that “there is no case of secondary spread”.

Home Ministry Sends Advisory to ITBP, SSB

The Home Ministry has sent an advisory to ITBP & SSB guarding Nepal, Bhutan and China borders regarding alertness on Coronavirus suspects. The Ministry has asked to alert concern departments and follow the same airport like procedures at the borders' checkpoints, reports ANI.

Final Test Samples of ITBP Quarantined Patients in Process

Final test samples of 406 quarantined patients are at the Indo Tibetan Border Police Quarantine Centre will be completed in the next few days, according to Vivek Pandey, a Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) spokesperson, reports PTI.

“249 samples were taken yesterday, 157 samples are being taken today,” he said.
“Reports will be received in 2-3 days. If the final reports of the tests are found negative, then they will be sent home by next week,” he added.


Harnath Singh Yadav Writes Letter to PM Modi Requesting Citizens' Rescue from Wuhan

BJP MP Harnath Singh Yadav has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting the rescue of 20 Indian citizens from Wuhan (China). PM has taken note of the letter and assured that they will be brought to India soon, reports ANI.

Indian Crew Member on Japanese Cruise Ship Tested Positive

One more Indian crew member on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship has tested positive for coronavirus according to the Indian Embassy in Japan on Friday, 14 February.

On Thursday, two Indian crew members had tested positive for the virus. Their condition is reported as stable.

China Rejects US Charge of Lack of Transparency in Sharing Coronavirus Info

China on Friday, 14 February, rejected US allegations that it is not transparent enough in sharing the details about the coronavirus outbreak, saying it was working with the international community in an "open and highly responsible manner" to contain the global crisis.

China's comments came after Larry Kudlow, the director of President Donald Trump's Economic Council, said that the US is little disappointed over not being invited in the medical operations and the lack of transparency coming from the Chinese over coronavirus outbreak.

Japan Lets Some Passengers Leave Ship for Quarantine on Land

Japan, on Friday, began allowing elderly passengers who test negative for the new coronavirus to leave the quarantined cruise ship and finish their quarantine in government-designated lodging.

The government has given passengers aged 80 or above in poor health or confined to windowless inner cabins on the Diamond Princess the chance to move from the ship to accommodation on land.

But only those who test negative for the virus that has thus far infected more than 200 people on the ship have the option to do so.

DGCA Expanding Universal Passenger Screening

In order to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in India, the DGCA has decided to expand universal screening for all passengers arriving in flights directly from Japan, South Korea, Thailand and Singapore, besides flights from China and Hong Kong, reports ANI.

SpiceJet Passenger Tests Negative for Coronavirus

The passenger travelling on SpiceJet flight SG-88 to Delhi from Bangkok on Thursday, who was suspected to have been infected with coronavirus, has tested negative for the infection.

Hong Kong Unveils Cash Handouts as Virus Deepens Economic Woes

Hong Kong announced a slew of cash subsidies on Friday to help businesses that have been battered by the coronavirus outbreak in a city already reeling from recession.

On Friday night, the city's pro-Beijing leader Carrie Lam said the government would dip into its financial reserves – some of the world's healthiest – to give cash subsidies to sectors hit hardest by the crisis.

The government will also issue Hong Kong dollars 80,000 (USD 10,300) to licenced travel agencies, smaller restaurants and retailers as well as Hong Kong dollars 5,000 to street hawkers, Hong Kong dollars 200,000 to licenced restaurants and factory canteens and a further Hong Kong dollars 5,000 to around 200,000 low-income families.

Taiwan Says China 'Stalling' Over Repatriation Flights Taipei

Taiwan on Friday accused China of dragging its feet over the evacuation of citizens stranded in the midst of the deadly coronavirus outbreak, the latest spat between the two neighbours.

Multiple countries have successfully arranged evacuation flights for nationals stuck in Hubei province where the epidemic is at its most intense and deadly.

But nearly 1,000 Taiwanese have been waiting for the best part of two weeks for a flight out.

Virus Infects More Than 1,700 Health Workers in China, 6 Die

More than 1,700 Chinese medical workers have been infected by the new virus that has killed nearly 1,400 people and spread to other parts of Asia and as far as the US and Europe, a senior Chinese official announced Friday.

Six of the workers have died, Zeng Yixin, vice director of the National Health Commission, said at a news conference.

The health commission is “highly concerned about this issue" and has issued guidelines for the prevention and control of infection within medical institutions, he said.

Odhisa Govt Places 83 People Under Home Quarantine

The Odisha government has placed 83 people who have returned from novel Coronavirus (nCoV) affected countries since January 15 under home quarantine as a precautionary measure, officials said on Friday.

"All the seven persons whose blood and swab samples were sent for examination, tested negative to the virus," an official said.

Coronavirus Could Hit Feb Production by 10 Per Cent: Hero MotoCorp

The country's largest two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp on Friday said Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak in China has affected the supply of some components which could hit the production by around 10 per cent in February, reports PTI.

"This (coronavirus) is likely to impact our planned production by around 10 per cent for the month of February." The company said any further impact on its production will depend on the developing situation in China.

Kerala Coronavirus Update

The Kerala Health Ministry has reported that 130 people have been removed from the list of home quarantine on Friday, 14 February. 2,288 people are currently under observation across the state, from which, 2,272 are in-home quarantined.

Out of 408 samples which had been sent for testing, 379 have come out as negative. 16 people are cCondition of 16 people monitored in hospitals is stable

Egypt Confirms First Case of Coronavirus

Egypt's Health Ministry has confirmed the first case of the new virus in the North African country, reported AP.

In a statement Friday, Health Ministry spokesman Khaled Mugahed said the person was a “foreigner" who is carrying the virus but not showing any serious symptoms.

Officials were able to confirm the case through a follow-up program the government implemented for travelers arriving from countries where the virus has spread. The ministry statement said the person was hospitalized and in isolation.

Death Toll in China’s Coronavirus Epidemic Jumps to Over 1500

The death toll in China's novel coronavirus epidemic has climbed to 1,523 with 143 new fatalities reported mostly from the worst-affected Hubei province while the confirmed cases jumped to over 66,000, health officials said on Saturday.

The country's Health Commission said it received reports of 2,641 new confirmed cases of novel coronavirus infection and 143 deaths on Friday from 31 provincial-level regions and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps.

Among the deaths, 139 were in Hubei Province, two in Henan and one in Beijing and Chongqing respectively, the commission said.

Another 2,277 new suspected cases were reported Friday, said the commission.

Chinese, Vatican Foreign Ministers Discuss Coronavirus Epidemic

The foreign ministers of China and the Vatican have met in the first such high-level encounter between the sides, which do not have diplomatic ties, Beijing's state media said on Saturday, 15 February, AFP reported.

The talks between China's Wang Yi and Archbishop Paul Gallagher in Munich, Germany, on Friday come as relations between the two sides steadily improve following a landmark agreement on the appointment of bishops in 2018.

Wang and Gallagher, who met during the Munich Security Conference, also discussed China's efforts to contain the new coronavirus epidemic, which has killed more than 1,500 and infected some 66,000 in the country.

Making Efforts to Disembark Indians From Cruise Ship After Quarantine Ends: Indian Embassy

The Indian Embassy in Japan on Saturday, 15 February, said it is making efforts to disembark all the Indians on board the cruise ship moored off the Japanese coast after the end of the quarantine period as authorities confirmed that 218 people, including three Indians, have been infected with the deadly disease on the ship.

A total of 138 Indians, including 132 crew and 6 passengers, were among the 3,711 people on board the quarantined ship that arrived at the Japanese coast earlier this month.

The Indian Embassy is in contact with Japanese authorities, the ship management company and Indian nationals on board the ship.

"We have continued our efforts with all of them for early disembarkation of our nationals after the end of the quarantine period and subject to favourable results of their tests for COVID - 19," an embassy official told PTI on Saturday.

US Prepares To Evacuate 380 Americans From Quarantined Ship In Japan: Report

According to the Wall Street Journal, the US government is planning to evacuate the American citizens who are on board the cruise ship that is quarantined off Japan. The ship has the most number of people infected by coronavirus that were found outside China.

The US government will offer seats to as many as 380 people on two planes which will arrive back to the US on Sunday, 16 February. However, those suffering with fever, cough or other symptoms will not be allowed to board the planes, the report added.

'Deport My Daughter from Japan Ship': Father of Indian Security Officer to Govt

With several coronavirus infected people being quarantined on Japan’s Diamond Princess ship, Dinesh Thakkar, father of Indian security officer Sonali Thakkar, on Saturday, 15 February, has requested the government to deport his daughter from the ship.

While speaking to ANI, he said, “I request the government to deport my daughter from the ship. She has tested negative for coronavirus. The government of Japan is doing its best, but all non-infected Indians should be deported.”

Health of 3 COVID-19 Infected Indians Has Improved: Embassy

The condition of the three Indians infected with the novel coronavirus on board the cruise ship moored off the Japanese coast has improved and no new cases of infection among the Indians on the quarantined vessel have been reported, the Indian Embassy in Japan said on Saturday.

A total of 138 Indians, including 132 crew and 6 passengers, were among the 3,711 people on board the quarantined ship that arrived at the Japanese coast earlier this month.

Three Indians were among the 218 people infected with COVID-19 on the ship.

The Indian Embassy said it was making efforts for early de-boarding of all the Indians from the ship after the end of the quarantine period.

"Happy to inform that health conditions of 3 Indians being treated for COVID-19 have improved and no new cases of infection of Indians on the ship," the embassy tweeted.

Delhi: 17 People Who Returned From Abroad Before COVID-19 Screening Show Symptoms

Seventeen people, out of a large number of passengers who had arrived in Delhi from China and other coronavirus-affected countries before the screening at the airport began around mid-January, have been found symptomatic for the infection and hospitalised, officials said.

Delhi health department officials have traced many of such passengers. According to data shared by the Delhi health department, till 13 February, over 5,700 such passengers were approached after being informed by the Delhi airport authorities.

"As many as 4,707 passengers were found asymptomatic and advised for home isolation (self-quarantined). Seventeen patients were found symptomatic and hospitalised," a senior official of the Delhi health department said.

Chinese Tourist Dies in France, 1st Coronavirus Death Outside Asia

An 80-year-old Chinese tourist has died from the novel coronavirus in France, the first death confirmed outside of Asia, French Health Minister Agnes Buzyn said on Saturday, 15 February.

Buzyn said that she had been told about the death of the patient -- in hospital in Paris since late January -- late on Friday, adding that his condition "had deteriorated rapidly" after several critical days.

The virus originated late last year in China, where it has since infected more than 66,000 people and killed more than 1,500.

Three deaths from the virus have so far been recorded outside mainland China -- in the Philippines, Hong Kong and Japan.

406 People Brought Back From Wuhan May Be Released Next Week If Samples Are Negative

A total of 406 people, who are housed at a quarantine facility of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) in New Delhi after being brought back from China due to coronavirus outbreak there, may be released next week if their final samples turn out to be negative, officials said on Saturday, 15 February, PTI reported.

The final samples of all the people quarantined at the ITBP facility were collected by a team of doctors on Friday and the reports are expected to be received by Monday.

"Based on the reports, a decision will be taken to discharge the travellers, if agreed to by the authorities, which is expected to be done in next week observing laid down protocols and due medical procedures as per the directives of Health Ministry," PRO of the ITBP Vivek Kumar Pandey said in a statement.

China's Xi Urges More Policing as Coronavirus Toll Rises

Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for tightened control over online discussion and increased policing to ensure "positive energy" and social stability, state media said on Saturday, 15 February, as the country struggles to contain the deadly new coronavirus, AFP reported.

Xi's remarks were made public as the authorities have faced rare bouts of public anger over the handling of an epidemic that has killed more than 1,500 people and infected some 66,000 across the country.

Censors had allowed some online criticism of local officials in central Hubei -- the epicentre and origin of the crisis -- but calls for freedom of speech and political reform were scrubbed after the death of a whistleblowing doctor from the virus.

WHO Experts Set to Join Battle Against Coronavirus in China

Top WHO experts are set to arrive in Beijing this weekend to assist China to contain the coronavirus outbreak as the death toll climbed to 1,523 in China and France reported the first fatality outside Asia, fuelling concerns about the epidemic.

Nepal Sends Airplane to Wuhan to Evacuate Citizens

Nepal Government has sent Nepal Airlines’ Airbus A-330 to Wuhan, to evacuate their nationals from China amid Coronavirus outbreak.

8 UK Coronavirus Patients Discharged from Hospital

Eight of the nine people diagnosed with the new coronavirus in Britain have left hospital having now tested negatively twice for the virus, NHS England said on Saturday.

“I want to stress that any individuals who are discharged from hospital are now well and do not pose any public health risk,” said Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

The final person is still being treated at Guy's and St Thomas's Hospital in central London.

Coronavirus Cases on Japan Ship Rise to 355

The number of people who have tested positive for the new coronavirus on a quarantined ship off Japan's coast has risen to 355, the country's health minister said, reported AFP.

Death Toll Soars to 1,665

The death toll from China's coronavirus epidemic has climbed to 1,665 after 142 more people died, mostly in the worst-hit Hubei Province, reported PTI. The number of confirmed cases has jumped to 68,500. However, Chinese health official have confirmed that efforts to control the outbreak have reached the ‘most crucial stage.’

Over 9,419 infected patients have been discharged after recovery so far, but the virus has posed a severe threat to the medical staff. More than 1,700 Chinese health officials have been infected while treating the patients and six of them have died.

Bank notes and coins in the affected areas are being quarantined and sanitised before releasing them back into circulation.

Experts from the World Health Organisation will be joining Chinese health authorities in in Beijing on Sunday, to coordinate efforts in containing the virus.

Nepal Government Evacuates 175 Nationals From Coronavirus-Hit China

The Nepal government on Sunday, 16 February, evacuated 175 Nepali citizens, mostly students, from Hubei province, the epicentre of the novel coronavirus, by a special aircraft and put them under quarantine for two weeks.

A chartered plane- Airbus A330- took off from Tribhuvan International Airport to Wuhan Tianhe International Airport on Saturday afternoon to bring back the Nepali nationals, including 170 students, an employee, two visitors and two children.

Three pilots, six crew members, an engineer, a loadmaster and a medical team comprising a doctor, nurses and paramedics from the Nepal Army were on board the flight to China.

The Nepalese were evacuated from six cities of the province, including provincial capital Wuhan, Enshi, Shiyan, Yichang, Jingmen and Jingzhou.

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