WHO: a third of the world's population could be victims of coronavirus
Infection with a new coronavirus can threaten at least one third of the world's population. This forecast was made by an American scientist, co-director of the Center for Infectious Disease Statistics at the University of Florida and an expert at the World Health Organization (WHO) Ira Longini. His words lead agency Bloomberg.
Longini notes that quarantines can only slow down, but not stop the spread of the virus, since it managed to penetrate beyond China even before the introduction of these measures. He emphasizes that at the moment, every infected person transfers the virus to an average of two or three people, which can lead to the fact that about two-thirds of the world's population will be infected.
At the same time, even if a way is found to halve the speed of the spread of the virus, about 30% of people on the planet are at risk of becoming infected, the scientist claims. According to him, the tactics of observation and containment will not bring significant results if the ability of the virus to be transmitted from person to person does not change.
Longini's point of view was confirmed by Professor Gabriel Leng of the University of Hong Kong, who also believes that coronavirus could affect two-thirds of humanity. Neil Ferguson of Imperial College London calculated that in China alone, up to 50,000 people can be infected every day.
According to the Xinhua News Agency with reference to Chinese doctors, the method used by Chinese doctors for plasma transfusion of patients with the coronavirus COVID-19 has proven to be effective in treating infected patients.
As experts explained, in the plasma of some people who coped with the disease, antibodies were found that help fight the coronavirus. According to the newspaper Global Times, using the new method has already managed to cure ten patients who were in serious condition.
Preliminary results from studies by Chinese scientists suggest that pregnant women who are infected with a new type of coronavirus do not presumably transmit it to the fetus, according to an article published by the medical journal Lancet.
Scientists from China examined the cases of nine women infected with coronavirus. All of them gave birth to healthy children. Researchers studied swabs from the nasopharynx of newborns, amniotic fluid, umbilical cord blood, and breast milk samples. None of the samples showed the presence of coronavirus in newborns.
The State Health Committee of China has previously decided that babies born to women with coronavirus or suspected to have the virus should be isolated for at least two weeks.
Over the past day, 121 people have died from COVID-19 disease in China due to coronavirus, according to the website of the National Health Commission. The total number of deaths in the country, according to authorities, amounted to 1380.
According to the commission, as of February 13, the number of confirmed cases of infection reached 63 851, having increased by 5 090 per day. 6723 people recovered and were discharged from hospitals. 10 204 people are in serious condition, another 177 thousand who were in contact with the sick are under the supervision of doctors. In Hong Kong, 53 cases of infection were confirmed (one person died), in Taiwan – 18, and in Macau – ten.
According to SCMP, the total number of new coronavirus cases worldwide was 64,434. Of these, 248 cases were detected in Japan, 58 in Singapore, 33 in Thailand, 28 in South Korea. In total, according to the CGTN channel, 505 cases of infection have been confirmed outside of China.
A day earlier, the PRC authorities announced that they had switched to a new method of diagnosis. In accordance with the new rules, clinically diagnosed cases are also included in the number of detected cases of COVID-19 infection, the total number of infected after that has risen sharply.
"We have adjusted the results regarding persons suspected of infection detected recently. Then we applied new classification standards to this group, which will be used in the future for the diagnosis of infected people," a statement on the committee’s website says hygiene and health issues. He is quoted by TASS.
The statement notes that the adjustment of the criteria by which a person is recognized as infected with a new coronavirus was made in order to unify the nationwide methods for identifying cases throughout China.
Meanwhile, the Westerdam cruise ship embarked on a raid off the coast of Cambodia after, for several days, Japan, Taiwan, Guam, the Philippines and Thailand consistently refused to park it. According to the BBC Russian Service, there are 2,257 people on board – 1455 passengers and 802 crew members.
Although there were no cases of coronavirus on the liner, authorities in countries that refused to accept it on their territory are alarmed by the fact that Westerdam left Hong Kong on February 1, and the 14 days of the incubation period, during which the disease progresses without symptoms, have not expired.
“Westerdam’s buffet has run out of flakes, but passengers are not discouraged. We are still at sea. The Cambodian authorities have come on board and are collecting passports from us to issue visas to those who have plane tickets from Phnom Penh,” writes Twitter the passenger.
Another Diamond Princess ship continues to be quarantined near the port of Yokohama in Japan. On it, another 44 people fell ill, and now the total number of infected is 218 people. Some are delivered to Japanese hospitals, while others are prohibited from leaving the cabins. In total, there are 3,700 passengers and crew on board the ship.