Death toll rises to 106 in China’s coronavirus outbreak

Medical workers in protective gear stand as a woman suspected of being ill with coronavirus waits to be seen at a community health station in Wuhan in central China's Hubei Province, Monday, Jan. 27, 2020. (AP Photo)

The death toll in China from the novel coronavirus outbreak has climbed to 106, authorities reported Tuesday.

The death toll from a new coronavirus in China has jumped to 106, with 4,515 confirmed infected and many more suspected of carrying the disease, health authorities said Tuesday.

Some 26 people had died since Monday morning, including the first casualty from Beijing. The number of confirmed virus cases jumped by more than 1,700 in the 24-hour interval, the figures released by the National Health Commission showed.

An additional 6,973 people were suspected of carrying the disease, authorities said, adding that they were keeping track of more than 47,000 people who may have come in contact with the virus.

China has cordoned off entire cities in the central Hubei province, where the virus was first identified in December, in an effort to contain the spread of the disease.

The government also extended the Lunar New Year holiday for three extra days until Sunday in order to discourage people from traveling.

The eastern metropolis of Shanghai has ordered many of its companies to stay closed for another two weeks.

The government on Tuesday urged its citizens to postpone trips abroad as the country expands a massive effort to contain the viral outbreak.

The recommendation to delay non-essential travel was issued "in order to protect the health and safety of Chinese and foreign people," the National Immigration Administration said in a statement.

"Reducing people's cross-border movement helps to prevent and control outbreaks," the agency added.

Authorities had already suspended domestic and overseas Chinese group tours as part of nationwide efforts to combat the coronavirus outbreak, which has infected more than 4,500 people across the country.

Chinese nationals took almost 150 million trips abroad in 2018, the official Xinhua news agency reported in May.

An additional 20 cases were reported in the Chinese semi-autonomous regions of Hong Kong and Macau and in self-ruled Taiwan.

The virus, which belongs to the same family of coronaviruses that caused an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2002, has also spread to at least 12 countries on four continents.

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