Coronavirus: Global death toll exceeds 2,000


Coronavirus: Global death toll exceeds 2,000
People wait for the train in Tokyo's Ginza area on February 17, 2020. - Japan said on February 17 it would cancel a public gathering to celebrate the birthday of new Emperor Naruhito on February 23, as fears grow over the spread of the new COVID-19 coronavirus in the country. (Photo by CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP) (Photo by CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP via Getty Images)

More than 2,000 people have died from the novel coronavirus across the globe, according to the latest figures released Tuesday.

China’s National Health Commission (NHC) reported Tuesday that 136 more people died of coronavirus in mainland China, 132 of which occurred in Hubei province.

The latest figures bring the total number of deaths in mainland China to 2,004, and the global death toll to 2,009. There have been five deaths reported outside of mainland China, with Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines and France all recording one death each.

The global number of confirmed coronavirus cases now stands at 75,117, with the majority of cases in mainland China.

China’s National Health Commission is expected to release numbers for all of China’s provinces later.

Coronavirus vaccine could take 12 to 18 months to develop and test

CHENGDU, Feb. 15, 2020 -- Staff members work at the health and quarantine comprehensive laboratory of Sichuan International Travel Health Care Center Chengdu Customs Port Outpatient Department, in Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan, Feb. 15, 2020. Since the outbreak of novel coronavirus pneumonia, novel coronavirus nucleic acid detection for incoming and outgoing travelers has become the primary task of the laboratory. Fifteen professionals formed an "anti-epidemic commando team", taking turns to their posts in groups everyday to ensure that samples are tested timely.
CHENGDU, Feb. 15, 2020 — Staff members work at the health and quarantine comprehensive laboratory of Sichuan International Travel Health Care Center Chengdu Customs Port Outpatient Department, in Chengdu, southwest China’s Sichuan, Feb. 15, 2020.

 

Meanwhile, if you were hoping for a quick cure for the coronavirus, the World Health Organization has some bad news.

WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a news briefing on Tuesday that a vaccine against the virus was still at least a year away.

But he said a vaccine would only protect against “the worst situation” of a pandemic, and for now it was important to promote public health solutions to limit the virus’s spread.

“This is a window of opportunity that should not be missed,” he said.

US risk from virus ‘minimal’: As health officials around the world work to limit the spread of the coronavirus, an expert told CNN the risk to the US so far is “very minimal.”

“There really are only 15 cases now, in addition to those who were shipped here. They were identified, they were isolated and the contacts were traced.” said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Fauci said that things could change, and a global pandemic was possible, but for now the situation appeared to be contained.

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