China coronavirus death toll surges to 170, more than 1,700 new cases

A medical worker in protective suit checks the body temperature of a car passenger at a checkpoint outside the city of Yueyang. (Reuters)

The nationwide death toll from China’s coronavirus epidemic has leaped to 170, the government said on Thursday, with more than 1,700 new infections confirmed.

Thirty-seven of the 38 new deaths came in hard-hit Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus, also known as corona, that is causing mounting global fear.

Another death occurred in southwestern Sichuan province, the National Health Commission reported.

Tibet also reported its first case, the commission said.

The 38 new deaths marked the biggest single-day jump yet and come as a massive containment effort is underway that has effectively locked down tens of millions of people in Hubei.

Most of the latest reported infections also occurred in Hubei, which tallied 1,032.

The World Health Organization on Wednesday warned all governments to “take action” over the deadly SARS-like virus.

Hundreds of foreigners were evacuated from the epicenter of the outbreak on Wednesday.

The contagion has spread to more than a dozen countries, with Finland and the United Arab Emirates becoming the latest to report their first cases.

- With Agencies

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Last Update: 04:26 KSA 07:26 - GMT 04:26
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