Wuhan hospital director dies, coronavirus death toll nears 2,000

by Jordyn Pair · Feb 18th, 2020 9:28 am

The reach of the coronavirus outbreak continues to grow, with 1,868 dead and 72,436 confirmed cases in mainland China, according to officials at China's National Health Commision.

Liu Zhiming, the head of a leading hospital in Wuhan, died of the virus on Tuesday, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission confirmed. He was 51.

"Since the outbreak, Comrade Liu Zhiming, regardless of his personal safety, led the medical staff of Wuchang Hospital to fight the epidemic, and made important contributions to the prevention and control of new-type coronavirus pneumonia in our city," the commission said in a statement.

Liu is the ninth known fatality among medical personnel fighting the virus.

🔦 Despite its wide reach, the director-general of the World Health Organization said that the virus, named COVID-19, is not as deadly as other coronaviruses, with more than 80 percent of patients only developing mild cases of the disease.


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