World Coronavirus Toll Hits Grim Milestone

China reports no new local infections for 2nd day
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 20, 2020 6:11 AM CDT
World Coronavirus Deaths Pass 10K
An ambulance brings a patient to the contagious diseases hospital in Warsaw, Poland, Thursday, March 19, 2020.   (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

Another grim milestone in the coronavirus pandemic: The number of deaths worldwide has now passed 10,000, according to Johns Hopkins University, which is tracking cases worldwide. As of early Friday, there have been 10,031 confirmed COVID-19 deaths worldwide out of more than 245,000 infections, according to the university. Around 86,000 patients have recovered. But in China, there was a more promising milestone, CNN reports. For the second day in a row, the country reported no new locally transmitted coronavirus infections, though there were 39 new cases among recent arrivals from overseas.

In early February, China was reporting thousands of new cases a day—mainly in Wuhan, where the virus first emerged—but the infection rate declined rapidly after what were then unprecedented lockdown measures. Hong Kong, however, reported 48 new cases Friday, bringing the territory's total to 256 after its biggest one-day jump, reports the South China Morning Post. Authorities have warned that Hong Kongers may have let their guard down too early. Singapore and South Korea have also been experiencing a second wave of infections among residents returning from overseas. On Thursday, the coronavirus death toll in Italy overtook China's, with a total of 3,405 deaths. COVID-19 deaths in Spain also rose sharply, to 767, while the US death toll is now around 150. (More coronavirus stories.)

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