US citizen dies in Wuhan, first foreigner to die from coronavirus outbreak

A nurse takes notes in the isolation ward for 2019-nCoV patients at a hospital in Wuhan in central China's Hubei province on Feb 6. - AP

NEW YORK (Agencies): A US citizen has died from the new coronavirus at the epicentre of the epidemic in China, the US embassy said on Saturday (Feb 8), in what appeared to be the first confirmed foreign death from the outbreak.

“We can confirm that a 60-year-old US citizen diagnosed with coronavirus died at a hospital in Wuhan, China, on Feb 6,” an embassy spokesman told AFP, without specifying the person’s gender.

“We offer the sincerest condolences to the family for their loss,” the spokesman said, adding that no further comment would be made out of respect for the family’s privacy.

A Japanese man in his 60s with a suspected coronavirus infection also died in hospital in Wuhan, the Japanese foreign ministry said, adding that it was “difficult” to confirm if he had the illness.

The cause of death was stated as viral pneumonia as it's been difficult to conclude definitively that he had the virus, though there was a high suspicion that he contracted it, the ministry said in a statement, citing Chinese authorities.

The man, who was in his 60s, would be the first Japanese victim of the outbreak if his infection is confirmed.

At least 722 people have died from the virus in China while more than 34,000 have been infected, according to the latest official figures.

Two people have died from the virus outside the mainland: a man from Wuhan in the Philippines and a 39-year-old man in Hong Kong.

The Chinese foreign ministry said on Thursday that 19 foreigners have been infected in China, and two of them have recovered. The ministry refused to disclose their nationalities.

The death toll from the outbreak is inching closer to the total from SARS and may surpass the threshold soon if the disease continues to kill people at its current pace.

The latest illness is clearly spreading at a faster rate. The global toll has reached 724 in about two months, while the 2002-2003 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, killed 774 people over a period that lasted about eight months. - Bloomberg/AFP

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3

American , Wuhan , foreigner , first , death , coronavirus


Next In Regional

World Economic Forum cancels 2021 annual meeting in Singapore
Hot, drought-hit Taiwan struck by power cuts for second time in a week
Indonesia seen at risk of COVID-19 'timebomb' after Eid travel
KLCI closes shade higher but broader market weak
India's Gujarat state braces for most severe cyclone in over two decades
Indonesian unicorns to merge, creating tech giant
Taiwan shares slide 3% as fresh Covid-19 outbreaks stoke recovery concerns
Covid-19: 4,446 new cases, Selangor tops list with 1,650 infections
Frontline staff at Bangkok hospital brace for new COVID-19 cases
Man's best friend turn K9 Covid-19 detectors in Thailand

Stories You'll Enjoy