There are more than 2,700 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 80 deaths in China. Worldwide concern is mounting about the rate of its spread. Here’s what you need to know:
- Outbreak in China: 2,744 cases have been confirmed in mainland China, and 80 people are dead. There are full or partial lockdowns in 15 Chinese cities in an effort to limit the virus’s spread.
- Global spread: There are now 50 cases confirmed around the world, in the United States, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, France, Australia, and more. Some countries are trying to evacuate their citizens out of Wuhan, the city at the epicenter of the outbreak.
- Contagious before symptoms: People can spread the virus before symptoms show, China warned on Sunday — meaning people may have been spreading the virus without knowing they were ill.
- Wild animal ban: The sale of all wild animals has been banned, the Chinese government announced Sunday. The outbreak has been linked to a market that sold wild animals in Wuhan.
- Stretched hospitals: Videos and witness accounts in Wuhan show packed hospitals and overworked staff. A new, 1,000-bed hospital is being built on the city’s outskirts, to be ready by February 3. About 1,600 medical professionals are being sent to the city on Sunday and Monday.