10 Facts You Need To Know About The Coronavirus Outbreak. On 7 January, Chinese authorities confirmed that they had identified a new virus. The new virus is a coronavirus, which is a family of viruses that include the common cold, and viruses such as SARS and MERS.
The coronavirus outbreak has increased global worries about the potential spread. Here is what you need to know about the virus.
- An outbreak of a new coronavirus that began in the Chinese city of Wuhan has already killed 80 people in China.
- The Chinese government has quarantined the city, where nine people have died so far, to contain the spread of the virus.
- Cases have been reported in Japan, Thailand, South Korea and the US, but so far, none in Africa.
- Of the nearly 3,000 people who have so far contracted the disease, the vast majority live in China.
- The youngest confirmed case is a 9-month-old girl in Beijing.
- There have been no deaths from the virus reported outside China.
- Officials in Beijing canceled major events indefinitely, including traditional temple fairs that are a staple of holiday celebrations, to help control the spread of the virus.
- Conclusive evidence about how the outbreak started is lacking. While officials in Wuhan first traced it to a seafood market, some patients who have fallen ill never visited the market.
- South Africa’s health authorities have increased their surveillance of travelers arriving from countries reporting cases of Wuhan flu, by using thermal scanners at airports.
- A South African couple is among people trapped in epicentre of coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China.