BEIJING: Chinese health authorities have confirmed that the coronavirus outbreak has killed 132 people and infected 4,515 so far
The officials also said 60 people had been discharged.
The majority of the reported cases are in mainland China, where local authorities have quarantined several major cities and canceled Lunar New Year’s events in Beijing and elsewhere.
Multiple cases of the virus have been confirmed in Hong Kong, Macao, Taipei, Thailand, Vietnam, South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan, Australia, France and the United States.
Several companies, including Walt Disney with its Shanghai Disney, are suspending operations until further notice during the normally festive weeklong Lunar New Year holiday to prevent the outbreak from spreading. Starbucks and McDonald’s also closed stores in Hubei province
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that usually infect animals but can sometimes evolve and spread to humans. Symptoms in humans include fever, coughing and shortness of breath, which can progress to pneumonia. Physicians have compared it to the 2003 outbreak of SARS, which had a short incubation period of two to seven days. U.S. officials said Friday that symptoms from the new virus, temporarily named 2019-nCoV, may take up to 14 days to appear.