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Over 300 confirmed Wuhan virus cases as more die

2020-01-21 HKT 23:52
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  • Passengers wear face masks as they pass through a major railway station in Wuhan. Photo: AP
    Passengers wear face masks as they pass through a major railway station in Wuhan. Photo: AP
The number of people infected by the new Sars-like virus has risen to 308, while two more people have died, according to officials.

The mayor of Wuhan – the epicentre of the outbreak – said the death toll from the outbreak has now jumped to six, with a dozen patients in critical condition.

The People's Daily reported that in addition to the 270 confirmed cases in Wuhan, 14 were confirmed in Guangdong, six in Shanghai and five in Chongqing. There were also cases in Beijing, Tianjin and Zhejiang.

In Wuhan itself, people showing symptoms are are now barred from leaving the city. Checks are being implemented at the airport, train and bus stations. Tour groups have also been banned.

The World Health Organisation will hold a special meeting on Wednesday to determine whether to declare a global public health emergency over the disease.

The virus has also been found in patients in Taiwan, Thailand, Japan and South Korea.

Countries across Asia have increased measures to block the spread of the new virus which can be transmitted between humans, raising fears of a massive outbreak during the upcoming major holiday travel rush.

At four airports in Thailand, authorities introduced mandatory thermal scans of passengers arriving from high-risk areas of China. Anyone exhibiting signs of fever will be quarantined for 24 hours for monitoring.

Around 1,300 passengers are expected each day in Thailand from Wuhan over Chinese New Year, which starts on Friday.(RTHK, AFP)