BEIJING: China on Thursday (Mar 5) reported 31 more deaths from COVID-19, taking its overall toll past 3,000.
Hubei, the province at the epicentre of the outbreak, accounted for all of the new deaths. In Wuhan, 23 people died.
The death toll from the outbreak in mainland China reached 3,012 as of the end of Wednesday, said the National Health Commission.
Most of the deaths – 2,305 – and cases have been recorded in Wuhan, which has been under an unprecedented lockdown along with the rest of Hubei province since late January.
Mainland China had 139 new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections on Wednesday, the commission said, up from 119 cases a day earlier and reversing three straight days of declines.
Only five of the new cases were outside Hubei.
But the number of new confirmed cases in Hubei, excluding Wuhan, has remained in single digits for seven consecutive days, with three new infections recorded on Wednesday.
That brings the total number of confirmed cases in mainland China so far to 80,409.
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The disease, which started in Wuhan, has since spread to dozens of countries around the world.
But China is now worried about importing cases from abroad as the virus has since spread to about 80 countries and territories, infecting more than 10,000 and killing more than 200 abroad.
About 3.4 per cent of confirmed COVID-19 cases have died, said the World Health Organization on Tuesday, which is far above seasonal flu’s fatality rate of under 1 per cent.
However, the novel coronavirus can still be contained, said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in Geneva.