Outside Wuhan’s Hankou railway station.
Here is the latest on the Wuhan coronavirus — aka 2019-nCoV:
“Officials at Texas A&M University say a student there may have contracted the coronavirus,” reports Weather.com. Earlier, CNBC reported that new cases in Singapore and Saudi Arabia had brought the global total to 650 people. Vietnam also confirmed two infections.
The officially reported death toll from the virus rose to 18, one more than when we sent yesterday’s newsletter.
The number of infections reported in China is now 639 (per Caixin, which has journalists on the ground in Wuhan and has opened its paywall).
“Wuhan will build a hospital…within 6 days based on the model of the Xiaotangshan SARS Hospital in Beijing in 2003,” according to The Paper.
Check for travel restrictions if you’re traveling anywhere in Asia.
How bad could it get?
The outbreak does not yet “constitute a public health emergency of international concern,” the World Health Organization announced today, but the relevant committee will reconvene “in a matter of days to examine the situation further.”
“Make no mistake. This is an emergency in China, but it has not yet become a global health emergency,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Thursday, per CNN. “It may yet become one.”
- Chinese expert who came down with Wuhan coronavirus after saying it was controllable thinks he was infected through his eyes / SCMP
- ‘It’s a ghost town’: shortages in Wuhan as China coronavirus transport bans take effect / SCMP
- Scale of China’s Wuhan shutdown is believed to be without precedent / NYT (porous paywall)
- Coronavirus deaths are so far mostly older men, many with previous health issues / NYT (porous paywall)
- Work to start on three possible China virus vaccines: epidemic response group / Reuters