Global spread of the deadly coronavirus: Where is it right now?
The death toll from China's coronavirus outbreak soared to 722 on Saturday, including the first foreign victim, as Hong Kong imposed a mandatory quarantine on mainland arrivals to block the spread of an epidemic that has caused global panic.
With 86 more people dying in mainland China - the highest one-day jump so far - the toll was closing in on the 774 killed worldwide during the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic. A 60-year-old US citizen diagnosed with the virus died on Thursday in Wuhan, the city at the epicentre of the health emergency, according to the US embassy, which did not provide more details about the person.
A Japanese man in his 60s with a suspected coronavirus infection also died in hospital in Wuhan, the Japanese foreign ministry said, adding that it was "difficult" to confirm if he had the illness.
The only fatalities outside the mainland were a Chinese man in the Philippines and a 39-year-old man in Hong Kong.
Nearly 35,000 people have been infected by the new strain, which is believed to have emerged in a market selling wild animals in Wuhan last year before spreading across China.
The epidemic has prompted the government to lock down cities home to tens of millions of people, as anger mounts over its handling of the crisis, especially after a whistleblowing doctor fell victim to the virus.
Vice Premier Sun Chunlan, on a visit to quarantined Wuhan this week, instructed officials to take a "wartime" approach as they implement drastic measures that include combing the city for feverish residents. With panic spiralling around the globe -- more than 320 cases have emerged in nearly 30 other countries -- researchers are racing to find treatments and a vaccine to fight the virus.
While the World Health Organization is set to give the disease a name within days, China's National Health Commission said it would temporarily call it "novel coronavirus pneumonia," or NCP.
Outside mainland China, there have been more than 340 infections reported in nearly 30 other places. There have also been two deaths, one in the Philippines and the other in Hong Kong.
Here's where 2019-nCoV has been confirmed:
- CHINA -
As of Saturday, 34,546 people have been infected across China, the majority in and around Wuhan.
Most of the 722 who have died in China were in that region, but officials have confirmed multiple deaths elsewhere, including in the capital Beijing.
The dead include a US citizen -- believed to be the first foreigner confirmed to have perished.
- ASIA-PACIFIC REGION -
Cruise ship, Diamond Princess: 64
Hong Kong: 26, including one death
South Korea: 24
Philippines: 3, including one death
Sri Lanka: 1
- NORTH AMERICA -
United States: 12
- EUROPE -
- MIDDLE EAST -
United Arab Emirates: 7