Coronavirus Outbreak: China To Probe Death Of Whistleblower Doctor

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After the death of coronavirus whistleblowing Dr Wenliang, China's anti-graft watchdog announced a comprehensive investigation into Wenliang reports.

Written By Bhavya Sukheja | Mumbai | Updated On:

After the death of coronavirus whistleblowing Dr Li Wenliang, China's anti-graft watchdog on February 7 reportedly announced that a comprehensive investigation into issues involving Wenliang reports by the masses will be conducted. The discipline inspection commission reportedly said that a team would go to Wuhan, where the doctor died as his death has sparked an outpouring of grief and anger over the worsening crisis. According to reports, Wenliang was among the eight physicians who were punished by Wuhan police for discussing the emergence of SARS-like virus on social media back in December. 

China's Supreme Court had also criticised Wuhan police for punishing the 'rumour-mongers' and reportedly said that the coronavirus outbreak may not have become so serious if the public had believed that the 'rumours' were true. Wenliang, who was an ophthalmologist, succumbed to the deadly virus on Friday at the Wuhan hospital. He was also the first one to break the information about coronavirus back in December as he informed his medical school alumnus about the patients affected with a SARS-like illness in his hospital. 

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The 34-year-old doctor was widely hailed as a hero after reports emerged of the local police targeting him alleging that he was spreading rumours about the virus when in fact he was trying to raise an alarm on the grave issue while the officials were reportedly downplaying the outbreak. 

$ 675 million launched for response plan

The deadly virus has already claimed at least 636 lives in China and has also infected nearly 30,000 people across the country. The outbreak took place in Wuhan in January and multiple countries have started evacuating their citizens from the country, and have decided to restrict the entry of foreigners returning from China. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared Coronavirus as a 'global public health emergency'. 

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In order to tackle the spreading virus, WHO stated that the international community has further launched a USD 675 million preparedness and response plan covering the months of February through to April 2020. Earlier, WHO had also warned the international public health authorities that the Wuhan Virus was of a significant threat to the nations outside mainland China and the disease's pandemic nature enforced a global response to the outbreak. Authorities also banned Chinese nationals from travelling into their territory, suspending airlines and halting the visa issuance as well as immigration facility. 

READ: China: Coronavirus Kills Whistleblower Doctor Li Wenliang

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