The National Health Commission of China has confirmed the transmission among humans of the new coronarivus (2019-nCoV), responsible for pneumonia that has already caused four deaths and more than 200 people infected in the country, state news agency Xinhua reported today.
The leader of the expert team of the said commission, Zhong Nanshan, said at least two patients from the southern province of Guangzhou have contracted the virus through human contact.
"Patients became infected after his relatives traveled to Wuhan (city of 11 million inhabitants and epicenter of the outbreak) and they will be infected, "Zhong said. He also added that several health workers had been infected.
However, Zhong said that "It only took two weeks identify the new coronavirus "and said that a situation like the one that occurred during the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic of 2003, which left 646 deaths in the Asian country (813 worldwide), will not be repeated.
At 18:00 local time on Monday (10:00 GMT time), the number of confirmed infections in China era of 217.
The respiratory disease specialist explained that the constant detection of new cases indicates that "The epidemic is still at an early stage", according to Xinhua.
Zhong foresaw an increase in contagions in the next few days, as Friday starts the holiday for the Chinese New Year, which causes the greatest human migration on the planet, but he was confident in managing to contain the spread of the new coronavirus with rapid diagnoses, adequate treatment and quarantine.
For its part, the World Health Organization (WHO) will hold tomorrow, day 22, a meeting of experts to determine if the current outbreak for coronavirus in China constitutes an international emergency.