Wuhan virus spreading fast across the globe, death toll on the rise

Wuhan, China (23 January, 2020)- Wuhan coronavirus is the latest outbreak of a pneumonia illness which has already claimed 18 lives in central China. Although it is unknown how the virus first started spreading, it has been identified that the virus broke out in a market in Wuhan.

As experts struggle to find a cure or possible prevention of the disease, the virus is spreading fast and has already spread to neighbouring countries such as Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. However, cases have even been reported in Saudi Arabia on Thursday.

China has already placed Wuhan, a city of 11 million people and the capital of Hubei province along with four other cities, on lockdown as a measure of containing the virus from spreading further. These include Huanggang, Xiantao, Ezhou and Chibi.

So far 18 people, the latest being the first out of the epicentre have died, while at least 634 are reportedly infected. As the numbers are feared to go up, China has allocated 1 billion yuan ($145 million) to support the Hubei government in providing aid and containing the virus.

Although the virus is spreading out of China fast, the World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that it is not yet a world health emergency. This decision was reportedly finalized after independent experts spent two days assessing information about the spread of the newly identified coronavirus.

“The Times of Addu” has received information that at least six Maldivians are in the city of Wuhan at this time including at least one child under the age of two. The Chinese Embassy of Maldives has urged any Maldivian in China to register with the embassy for further assistance.