Coronavirus deaths spike again

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –The death toll and number of people infected by the Wuhan coronavirus continues to grow, with no signs of slowing despite severe quarantine and population control methods put in place in central China.

The number of confirmed cases globally stood at 28,256 as of this morning, with more than 28,000 of those in China. The number of cases in China grew by 3,694, or 15%, on the previous day. There have been 563 deaths so far, all but two of which were in China, with one in the Philippines and one in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong announced a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all people entering the semi-autonomous city from the Chinese mainland, including residents. The move comes after all but three border crossings were closed to try and contain the virus.

“It is expected that the measure will further reduce cross-boundary flow of people between Hong Kong and the Mainland, thus reducing the risk of transmission and spread of the disease in the community,” the city’s health authority said.

Speaking Wednesday, the city’s leader Carrie Lam said they were “seeing a worsening trend of the outbreak,” as the number of confirmed cases grew to 21. At least three of those cases did not travel outside of Hong Kong during the incubation period, which suggests there may be community transmission taking place, Lam said.

Hospital authorities have asked striking employees to return to work Thursday, as the number of cases in the city continues to grow. At least 7,000 healthcare workers walked out this week demanding a full closure of the border with China and extra gear for health workers.

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