Coronavirus: Death Toll Rises To 719 As Demand For Protective Gear Grows

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During the daily briefing on Friday, the Director-General of WHO stated that there is a lack of protective gear and medical supplies in the region

Written By Devarshi mankad | Mumbai | Updated On:

The death toll due to the deadly coronavirus in China has reached 719, Sputnik reported citing Chinese authorities on Saturday. According to the country's health officials, the number of people, who died of the deadly coronavirus in the Hubei province has risen to 699. The number of infected people has also increased from 22,112 to 24,953. 

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Virus claims more lives

During the daily briefing on Friday, the Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated that there is a lack of protective gear and medical supplies in the region, with the cost of each are up to 20 times higher. He said, "the world is facing severe disruption in the market for personal protective equipment. Demand is up to 100 times higher than normal and prices are up to 20 times higher. This situation has been exacerbated by widespread, inappropriate use of PPE outside patient care. As a result, there are now depleted stockpiles and backlogs of 4 to 6 months. Global stocks of masks and respirators are now insufficient to meet the needs of WHO and our partners."

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On Friday, the US announced that it will be providing $100 million, in addition to the extended funds, to support China in tackling the spreading virus.

Last week, WHO declared Coronavirus as a 'global public health emergency'. In order to tackle the spreading virus, the WHO stated that the international community has launched a USD 675 million preparedness and response plan covering the months of February through to April 2020.

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Amidst the growing crisis, WHO has repeatedly stated that it stands by China for its efforts to tackle the crisis. Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently stated, "Let me be clear: this declaration is not a vote of no confidence in China. On the contrary, WHO continues to have confidence in China’s capacity to control the outbreak..To the people of China & to all of those around the world who have been affected by this outbreak, we want you to know that the stands with you."

In India, three people have been confirmed with Coronavirus, with all three cases in Kerala. The patients are being kept in isolation. 

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