Is the #coronavirusus epidemic slowing down?

CORONAVIRUS cases continue to rise, with an estimated 64,000 people now infected with the deadly disease. But a senior UN health expert now believes the epidemic could be beginning to slow down.

PUBLISHED: 16:03, Fri, Feb 14, 2020 | UPDATED: 16:21, Fri, Feb 14, 2020

Although coronavirus (COVID-19) infections are still rising around the world, a health expert has claimed there is evidence disease transmission outside China might not be the feared tip of the “iceberg”. Dr Michael Ryan, the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Health Emergencies Programme chief has urged against making hasty assessments about coronavirus.

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He said on Thursday, February 14: “We’re not seeing a dramatic increase in transmission outside China.

We’re not seeing a dramatic increase in transmission outside China

Dr Michael Ryan

Of the reported 1,400 deaths from the coronavirus to date, all but two have been in China.

China’s Hubei province, the centre of the coronavirus outbreak reported 116 new deaths from the virus to the end of Thursday, according to a statement published today.

This follows a sharp increase on the previous day’s tally, meaning there were 4,823 new cases, including 3,095 clinical diagnoses, to take the total for Hubei to 51,986.

Dr Ryan added there had been two deaths and 447 cases in 24 countries outside China.

READ MORE: Coronavirus outbreak UK: How to protect yourself as Britons infected

Hong Kong coronavirusCoronavirus UK: There are some indications the epidemic is slowing down (Image: Getty)

how contagious is coronavirusCoronavirus UK: An estimated 64,000 people now infected with the deadly disease (Image: Express)

On Thursday Japan announced its first coronavirus death - a woman in her 80s who lived in Kanagawa, south-west of Tokyo.

The woman’s diagnosis was confirmed after her death and she had no known link to Hubei province.

The biggest cluster outside China is on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, which is in quarantine in Yokohama port, Japan.

Dr Ryan added 218 passengers on board have so far tested positive for COVID-19.

Other cruise ships in the South China Sea

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