The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) toll increased on Saturday to 2,360 deaths and over 77,700 infections around the world, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Moreover, Chinese health authorities reported 397 cases last Friday in mainland China, a significant drop from the 889 cases confirmed a day earlier, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in China to 76,288 so far.
The vast majority of deaths were reported in the Chinese province of Hubei, where the outbreak has started in December 2019, as more than 109 new deaths were reported there.
In Iran, the health authorities announced the death of one case out of 10 reported earlier. According to Iran’s Ministry of Health, the toll of COVID-19 in the country reached 5 deaths and 28 infections on Saturday.
Iranian health ministry spokesperson Kianoush Jahanpour said, “We have 10 new confirmed cases of COVID-19. One of the new cases unfortunately passed away.”
In addition, Lebanon and Israel confirmed their first cases of the virus infection last Friday. The Lebanese case was was a national coming from Iran. Iraqi authorities have closed borders for Iranian citizens not to enter Iraq.
The United Arab Emirates reported on Saturday two cases holding Iranian nationality. This raises the number of cases in the UAE to 13, of whom 3 recovered.
“Although the total number of cases outside China remains relatively small, we are concerned about the number of cases with no clear epidemiological link, such as travel history to China or contact with a confirmed case,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a briefing on Saturday.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses with some causing less-severe disease, such as the common cold, and others more severe disease such as MERS and SARS. The virus was confirmed that it can transmit easily from person to person.
Symptoms of the virus include fever and cough, and some people should have difficulty breathing. The symptoms appear to set in at some point between two days and two weeks after the person has been exposed to the virus.