China’s coronavirus death toll hits 717

A lab technician monitoring samples taken from people suspected ill with a deadly new coronavirus, in Wuhan, Hubei province, on Thursday. The virus has spread to two dozen countries. – AFP pic, February 8, 2020.

THE number of deaths from China’s new coronavirus epidemic jumped to 717 today, surpassing the toll from the SARS outbreak on the mainland and Hong Kong almost two decades ago.

Another 81 people have died from the virus in central Hubei province, where the disease emerged last December, according to the regional health commission.

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