First Person Outside of China Dies in Philippines: Virus Update

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(Bloomberg) — A 44-year-old man died on Saturday as a result of coronavirus in the Philippines, the World Health Organization says. The Wuhan resident who traveled to the Philippines is the first known person to have died outside China from the virus.The death toll in China exceeded 300 and infections accelerated, as more countries restrict travel to and from the country amid rising fears of contagion.The Philippines is the latest to prevent travelers from China from entering as governments sought to keep those exposed to the potentially lethal virus from their shores. Airlines in Asia, Europe and the Middle East are also suspending flights to the mainland.Bloomberg is tracking the outbreak here.Key Developments:A 44-year-old man is the first known person who died outside China from the virus.China recorded 2,590 new cases for Feb. 1, and 45 deaths. Total infections rose to 14,380 in the country, with 304 deathsPhilippines, Russia block arrivals from ChinaNew York City officials says a suspected patient is “doing well”Goldman Sachs scraps global partners’ meeting in New YorkChina could struggle to honor its trade deal with the U.S.WHO Reports Death in the Philippines (10:35 a.m. HK)The World Health Organization said a 44-year-old male, a known resident of Wuhan, experienced fever, cough and a sore throat before being admitted to San Lazaro Hospital in Manila. He died on Feb. 1.He was the second confirmed case of the virus in the Philippines and was a close contact of the first infection in the country, also a Wuhan resident.Philippines Bans Travelers from ChinaThe Philippines will temporarily ban all travelers except for its citizens and permanent residents arriving from China, Hong Kong and Macau from entering.China Death Toll Climbs to 304 (8:10 a.m. HK)Another 45 people died in China from coronavirus, the National Health Commission said Sunday, pushing the nation’s death toll to 304.The total confirmed cases climbed to 14,380 with 2,590 added on Feb. 1, the government said. Of the cases, 2,110 are deemed severe.Goldman Sachs Scraps Partners’ Meeting (7:30 a.m. HK)Goldman Sachs Group Inc. canceled its global partners’ meeting in New York on Wednesday, citing concerns about the coronavirus, the company said in an email.A modified program is planned in the city and the firm’s partners from outside New York can attend virtually, according to the email on Saturday. The status of other events tied to the partners’ meeting will be determined soon, the firm said.The decision was made “out of an abundance of caution and concern,” according to the email.Hubei Death Toll Climbs to 294 (6:45 a.m. HK)Hubei Province, epicenter of the global coronavirus outbreak, reported another 45 deaths and 1,921 new infections early Sunday, pushing total fatalities in the region to 294.Total infections rose 27% from the previous report.Boston Student Isolated at Home (4:50 p.m. NY)The eighth person in the U.S. diagnosed with the novel coronavirus is a student in his 20s at the University of Massachusetts in Boston who recently visited Wuhan, epicenter of the outbreak.The student, who is feeling well, doesn’t need hospitalization and has been asked to stay at home in isolation, said Jennifer Lo, medical director of the Boston Public Health Commission. He arrived from Wuhan on Tuesday, a day before Boston Logan International Airport was to begin screening of passengers.“There is a risk in exposing others, those who are hospitalized, to this virus if he had been transported,” Lo said. “So it’s actually safer for him and the general public if he is to remain in his location rather than transferring him to a hospital setting.”Since his return to Boston, the man hasn’t taken part in major public activities and officials are identifying his close contacts, said Larry Madoff, medical director of infectious disease and laboratory sciences at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. They include household contacts and health-care workers, a number so few “we could count them on our fingers,” he said.NYC Awaits Results on Patient (4:25 p.m. NY)A man in New York City is hospitalized in stable condition at Bellevue Hospital after showing signs of the coronavirus, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene said. If confirmed, it would be the first instance of the virus in the city.Story continuesThe city agency has sent their tests to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to confirm whether the patient has the coronavirus. The analysis will take a minimum of 36-48 hours and depends on testing capacity, the department said in a tweet.“An individual with a travel history to China felt unwell and sought help from a medical provider who promptly contacted the Health Department,” said Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot.U.S. Picks Four Quarantine Sites (3:15 pm. NY)The U.S. designated military bases in California, Colorado and Texas as sites for travelers who will be subject to a 14-day quarantine after arriving from Hubei in China, the Pentagon said.The Defense Department said as many as 1,000 people can be housed at the 168th Regiment, Regional Training Institute in Fort Carson, Colorado; the Marine Corps Air Station in Miramar, California; Travis Air Force Base in California; and Lackland Air Force Base in Texas.“DOD personnel will not be directly in contact with any potential evacuees and evacuees will not have access to any base location other than their assigned housing,” Jonathan Rath Hoffman, the Pentagon’s chief spokesman, said in tweets. The Department of Health and Human Services sought access to the facilities, he said.March Air Reserve Base in Riverside, California, already has about 195 American who were flown out of Wuhan, China, earlier this week on a charter flight.Russia Halts Visas for Chinese (2:40 p.m. NY)Russia suspended visa-free tourist travel to China and temporarily blocked Chinese citizens from reaching Russia over the Mongolia border, the government said in a tweet on Saturday in response to the spread of the coronavirus.The Interior Ministry also will stop processing documents for Chinese nationals to enter Russia for jobs, along with permits to hire workers from China, according to a directive, the state-run TASS news agency reported. Visa-free travel was part of an agreement the two nations worked out in 2018.Hong Kong Mulls Tighter Border Controls (1:45 p.m. NY)Hours after Hong Kong medical workers voted to strike after their demands to shut the border with China were rejected, the government appeared to open the door for more controls on travel from the mainland.“The government is examining the infection continuously and will explore further tightening of the management of control points,” a spokesman said. The government appealed to workers “to reconsider their decision” and keep providing service, praising them for “standing fast at their posts.”The medical professionals in a near-unanimous vote Saturday agreed to take action starting Monday, and 9,000 members pledged to join.A complete closing of the border sought by the workers is “not the right answer” and is not in line with World Health Organization guidelines, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said at briefing.U.S. Confirms Eighth Case (12:55 p.m. NY)A Boston man who recently returned to the U.S. from Wuhan has been confirmed as infected with the coronavirus, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and Boston Public Health Commission said on Saturday.The man had sought medical care soon after returning to Massachusetts, according to a statement. He has been isolated and will remain so until cleared by health officials. His few close contacts have been identified and are being monitored for signs of symptoms, according to the statement.The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the postive test result late Friday, the state and city agencies said.Delta Ends China Flights Early (12:10 p.m. NY)Delta Air Lines Inc. will suspend U.S.-China service this weekend, earlier than planned, the carrier said Saturday in a statement. The last China-bound flight will leave Saturday and the last return flight departing China on Sunday.The decision reflected new U.S. requirements that deny entry to foreign nationals who went to China in the past two weeks, the airline said. U.S. citizens who visited Hubei province are also subject to possible quarantine. The Atlanta-based airline had planned to halt flights from Feb. 6 through April 30.Delta has 42 flights a week between the U.S. and China, and daily from Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles and Seattle.U.A.E. Reports Fifth Virus Case, WAM Says (11:30 a.m. NY)A patient who arrived in the United Arab Emirates on a flight from Wuhan, epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in Hubei Province, has been confirmed as being infected, the state-run WAM news agency reported, citing the health ministry.The U.A.E. now has five confirmed cases, according to the statement.Kim Offers ‘Deep Consolation’ to China’s Xi, Families (11 a.m. NY)North Korea’s Kim offered “deep consolation for the families who lost their blood relatives due to the infectious disease” in a letter to China’s President Xi Jinping, North Korean state news agency KCNA said Saturday. The country’s ruling Workers’ Party also sent an an undisclosed amount of aid to its Chinese counterpart to help fight the epidemic.Kim conveyed his desire “to render help even a bit,” KCNA reported.North Korea shut its borders to visitors from China on Jan. 22, in an apparent effort to seal itself off from the outbreak.Hong Kong Medical Workers Vote to Strike (9:14 a.m. NY)Thousands of Hong Kong medical professionals voted to begin a five-day strike Monday after the government refused their demand to shut all entry points from China amid the deadly virus outbreak on the mainland.The Hospital Authority Employees Alliance said about 99% of votes cast were for “Yes.” More than 9,000 members have pledged to take part, first in suspending non-emergency services offered by the city’s Hospital Authority before extending it to providing only limited emergency needs, it said.China Seeks to Ensure Coal Supply (8 a.m. NY)China’s energy regulator asked coal miners and state-owned enterprises to resume production, subject to inspections and health measures, according to a statement from the National Energy Administration.The regulator wants to prioritize coal supply in areas heavily hit by the epidemic, as well as in northeast China, Beijing, Tianjin and Tangshan. NEA asked local authorities to report daily production from Feb. 3 and warned that miners that resume operation slowly will be summoned.Taiwan Bars Entry to Guangdong Residents (7:23 a.m. NY)Taiwan extended an entry ban to residents of China’s southern Guangdong province, where more than 500 confirmed cases of coronavirus have been reported. Residents of Hubei, the epicenter of the outbreak, have already been barred from entering the island.Taiwan’s Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung said in a briefing Saturday that the ministry won’t rule out extending the ban to more Chinese provinces if necessary.Singapore, Japan Report New Cases (7 a.m. NY)Singapore reported two new coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 18. In Japan, three infections were confirmed for a total of 20.Qatar Air Suspends Flights to China (6:53 a.m. NY)Qatar Airways will suspend flights to China starting from Feb. 3, becoming the first Persian Gulf carrier to halt flights over coronavirus fears.The decision to stop flights to mainland China will be effective until further notice, according to a statement from the company, “due to significant operational challenges caused by entry restrictions imposed by several countries.” Operations will be reviewed weekly.China Exempts Duties on Some Health Imports (6:32 a.m. NY)China said it will exempt some duties on imports related to coronavirus including donated goods from foreign countries and direct purchase by its health regulators, according to a statement on the website of Finance Ministry on Saturday. Meanwhile, imports of goods falling into those two categories from the U.S. won’t be subject to the punitive tariffs China has imposed amid the trade war, another statement said on the website.Separately, the ministry of commerce said it will increase the supply of necessities including food and masks.–With assistance from Alfred Liu, Miaojung Lin, Debby Wu, Dandan Li, Abeer Abu Omar and Sara Marley.To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Steve Geimann in Washington at sgeimann@bloomberg.net;Michelle Fay Cortez in Minneapolis at mcortez@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Shamim Adam at sadam2@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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