Health officials in China report the death toll from the novel coronavirus has reached 1,380 as of Friday morning after China's national health commission deducted 108 deaths in the Hubei province due to "repeated statistics."
There have been 63,800 confirmed cases of the newly discovered virus, dubbed COVID-19, in mainland China, according to the latest numbers from the health commission. The large increases in reported cases comes as health officials changed the way they are diagnosing the disease in patients. Instead of waiting for lab results to confirm an infection, officials are now identifying cases based on what a patient's lungs look like on CT scans.
"This does not suggest a significant change in the trajectory of the outbreak outside China," Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO's health emergencies program, said.
In the United States, the number of confirmed cases increased to 15 after the first case was diagnosed in Texas. The patient is one of the passengers who was evacuated from Wuhan and flown to Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio on Feb. 7, officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed on Thursday. The remaining passengers will remain under federal quarantine until Feb. 20.
"There will likely be additional cases in the coming days and weeks, including among other people recently returned from Wuhan," the CDC said in a statement. "While 195 people were discharged from quarantine on Tuesday, more than 600 people who returned on chartered flights from Wuhan remain under federal quarantine and are being closely monitored to contain the spread of the virus."
Japan reported its first fatality from the virus, which increases the number of fatal cases outside mainland China to three. One fatality was reported in in Hong Kong and one in the Philippines.
The patient was reportedly a woman in her 80s who was being treated at a hospital near Tokyo after she began developing symptoms on Feb 1.
Meanwhile, Japan's health ministry confirmed an additional 44 cases aboard a quarantined cruise ship anchored off the coast of Yokohama, bringing the total number of cases aboard the ship to 219.
The Diamond Princess has been quarantined off the coast of Japan for the last few weeks after a man who was on board the ship tested positive for COVID-19.
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