Health authorities in China’s Hubei province – epicentre of the novel coronavirus epidemic – on Saturday reported 139 new deaths attributable to the contagion and 2,420 newly confirmed cases. This brings the totals announced by the province’s health commission to 1,457 and 54,406, respectively, through Friday.
Officials in Hubei had reported 116 fatalities and 4,823 newly confirmed cases a day earlier.
Feb 15, 2020 – The Hubei province changed the diagnostic criteria used to confirm cases on Thursday, with doctors now having broader discretion to determine which patients are infected. The change in diagnostic criteria led to a spike in confirmed cases on Thursday, which were nearly 10 times more than the day before.
Of the new cases announced on Saturday, 1,138 were confirmed through clinical diagnosis including CAT scans and other tests, and 1,282 were confirmed through test kits.
Coronavirus updates as of 07:00 HNT, February 15, 2020
Some 1,923 of the new cases were confirmed in Hubei’s capital of Wuhan, where the virus is believed to have originated at a seafood and meat market.
As the Chinese government scrambles to contain the outbreak, the contagion has spread to at least 25 other countries, sickening more than 500 outside China.
Cissy Zhou reports on South China Morning Post (SCMP)