nopparit/iStock(NEW YORK) — The new coronavirus that has infected more than 200 people in China has been transmitted between humans, according to Chinese health authorities.
Zhong Nanshan, who heads up China’s National Health Commission, told Xinhua News Agency, China’s official state-run news organization, that two cases of human-to-human transmission had been confirmed in China, one in Wuhan and one in Guangdong.
Chinese officials had initially linked the virus to large seafood market in Wuhan, China, where many of the cases originated. Newly reported infections more than tripled over the weekend, rising to more than 200 casesaccording to the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission. Several cases were reported outside of China, in Japan, Thailand and South Korea.
Three people have died from the virus, which is in the same family as SARS, MERS and the common cold.
Patients’ symptoms, which resemble pneumonia, include difficulty breathing, fever and lesions on the lungs, which were revealed through chest X-rays.
“The recent outbreak of novel coronavirus pneumonia in Wuhan and other places must be taken seriously,” Chinese President Xi Jinping said Monday, according to state television network CCTV.
In his first commends about the outbreak, Xi warned that it’s “extremely crucial” to take every action to fight the disease, and that “party committees, governments and relevant departments at all levels should put people’s lives and health first.”
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