Wuhan builds 11 new makeshift coronavirus hospitals OVERNIGHT
Wuhan to open ELEVEN MORE makeshift coronavirus hospitals after workers turn sports halls and exhibition centres into temporary medical centres OVERNIGHT
- The alternative facilities will have more than 10,700 beds in total and treat patients with minor conditions
- One gymnasium and two exhibition halls were revamped overnight on Monday and eight more are underway
- Wuhan officials have been accused of hiding the real death toll as people who died at home were not counted
- The city has opened its first coronavirus hospital built from scratch and is set to open another on Thursday
Coronavirus epicentre Wuhan will open 11 new makeshift coronavirus hospitals after builders and volunteers worked overnight turning sports halls and exhibition centres into temporary medical centres.
The facilities, with more than 10,700 beds in total, will receive suspected coronavirus patients as well as confirmed cases with minor conditions, according to state media.
The virus-ravaged city has opened its first dedicated coronavirus hospital, which was built from scratch in the space of 10 days and has 1,000 beds.
Another similar institute, with 1,600 beds and was constructed from the ground up, is set to receive its first patients tomorrow.
Scroll down for video
Workers walk in the Wuhan International Convention and Exhibition Centre after working there overnight on February 4
Wuhan will open 11 new makeshift coronavirus hospitals after builders complete revamping with eye-opening efficiency
The facilities will treat suspected coronavirus patients as well as confirmed cases with minor conditions, according to media
The death toll from the epidemic continues to rise in China as the country’s authorities reported 66 new deaths overnight
The life-threatening disease, which emerged in Wuhan, has killed at least 493 people and infected more than 24,600 globally
Three places – Hongshan Gymnasium, Wuhan Living Room Exhibition Centre and Wuhan International Convention and Exhibition Center (pictured) – were revamped overnight on Monday and are ready to receive coronavirus patients
The death toll from the epidemic continues to rise in China as the country’s authorities reported 66 new deaths overnight – a new daily record.
The life-threatening disease, which emerged in Wuhan in December, has killed at least 493 people and infected more than 24,600 globally.
The city’s construction firms started to renovate leisure centres and exhibition halls from Monday.
Three places – Hongshan Gymnasium, Wuhan Living Room Exhibition Centre and Wuhan International Convention and Exhibition Center – were revamped overnight on Monday, reported Xinhua News Agency.
They have more than 4,000 beds in total and will treat confirmed coronavirus cases who have minor conditions and are under the age of 65, the report said.
The move is set to save the beds in formal hospitals to those in serious or critical condition.
Workers arrange beds in a 2,000-bed mobile hospital which has been set up in an exhibition center in Wuhan on February 4
Wuhan authorities have also started to convert the city’s various sports hall into so-called ‘shelter hospitals’ for coronavirus patients with minor conditions. Among them, Wuhan Hongshan Gymnasium was turned into a hospital overnight on Monday
Workers lay beds in the Wuhan Living Room Exhibition Centre today to help curb the accelerating coronavirus epidemic
Eight more hospitals – including Guanggu Science and Technology Center, Wuhan International Expo Centre and Wuhan Sports Centre – were finished or being finished today as locals complain about not being able to see doctor amid the outbreak
Eight more establishments – including Guanggu Science and Technology Center, Wuhan International Expo Centre and Wuhan Sports Centre – were finished or being finished today. The former two will have 1,000 beds each and the latter 1,100 beds.
Among them, Guanggu Science and Technology Center, which occupies 2.5 acres, has been divided into three sections and is equipped with special channels for medical workers to enter and exit. It also has dedicated areas for medics to disinfect themselves, reported Beijing News.
The other centres under refurbishment are Tazihu Sports centre (1,000 beds), Wuhan Sports Hall (300 beds), Shipailing Vocational High School (800 beds), Dahuashan Outdoor Sports Centre (1,000 beds) and the gymnasium of Huangpi No. 1 Middle School (500 beds).
Wuhan, which has been on lockdown for nearly two weeks, is preparing to open its second emergency facility, Leishenshan Hospital, on Thursday. The aerial photo taken on Tuesday shows Leishenshan Hospital in suburban Wuhan near completion
Around 2,000 medical workers are expected to treat patients in Leishanshan or Thunder God Hospital, which occupies 14 acres and has 1,600 beds. The picture released shows construction workers at the Leishenshan Hospital on February 4
Ground was broken in Jiangxia District to the south of the city’s centre on January 26 and the project is due to be finished in the space of 12 days. The picture released shows construction workers at the Leishenshan Hospital on February 4
The second hospital in Wuhan, named the Leishanshan Hospital, is situated in Jiangxia District, a suburban area to the south of downtown. In the picture above, construction machinery sits at the site of the second temporary hospital on January 26
Around 2,000 medical workers are expected to treat patients in the dedicated 14-acre, 1,600-bed centre, which is the second of its kind in Wuhan, the ground zero of the coronavirus outbreak in China. In the picture above, an engineering contractor walks in front of construction machinery on the construction site of the Leishenshan Hospital on January 26
The second institution is named the Thunder God Mountain Hospital because Chinese people believe the God of Thunder is the God who punishes the God of Evil, signifying that the locals wish the ‘evil’ coronavirus to be controlled as soon as possible
Why are China’s coronavirus hospitals called Huoshenshan and Leishenshan
The names of both hospitals in Wuhan are inspired by the Chinese mythology.
The first facility is named the Fire God Mountain Hospital because according to legend, fire can counteract gold, which is one of the five elements in traditional Chinese medicine that represents a person’s lungs – indicating the coronavirus which mainly infects one’s respiratory system.
The second institution is named the Thunder God Mountain Hospital because Chinese people believe the God of Thunder is the God who punishes the God of Evil, signifying that the locals hope the ‘evil’ coronavirus can be subdued as soon as possible.
Wuhan residents have been complaining about not being able to see doctors as the city’s medical resources were drained by the outbreak.
The controversy has sparked claims that the real death toll could far exceed the official figure because people who died before they could be hospitalised were not counted into the formal statistics.
The city’s authorities today claimed that 28 appointed hospitals had received a total of 8,182 patients, while another 5,425 people were in isolation at 132 appointed quarantine venues.
More than 20,620 out of Wuhan’s 14 million residents are currently in self-quarantine at home, according to officials.
Chinese authorities have released satellite images showing how Wuhan’s first coronavirus hospital was built from scratch in a field at unprecedented speed.
Huoshenshan or Fire God Mountain Hospital has received its first batch of patients after just 10 days of construction in the western suburbs of Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak and the capital of Hubei Province.
This is the first medical centre built from the ground up to treat coronavirus sufferers. Huanggang, a city near Wuhan, opened a coronavirus hospital last Tuesday after converting an existing building into a dedicated facility.
A satellite image released by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation shows a verdant field in Caidian District of Wuhan on October 29, 2019, before the area is turned into the city’s first coronavirus hospital to combat the deadly disease
Another satellite image released by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation shows construction works in full swing for Huoshenshan or Fire God Hospital in Wuhan on January 30 – seven days after ground was broken for the project
A third satellite image released by China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation shows building works nearly finished for Huoshenshan Hospital. The facility was completed on February 2 and has received its first batch of patients
Mechanical equipment work on the construction site of Huoshenshan in the Caidian District of Wuhan as the city is ravaged by the outbreak of coronavirus. The hospital will occupy six acres and comprise a number of temporary buildings, it is said
Huoshenshan Hospital was finished on Sunday after construction workers toiled day and night through the Lunar New Year
Some 1,400 military medics were brought in from the People’s Liberation Army to run the new hospital, which comprises revamped shipping containers and prefabricated buildings.
The official Xinhua news agency said many of the staff were involved in the fight against another coronavirus, SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which killed some 650 people in mainland China and Hong Kong between 2002 and 2003.
Wuhan, which has been on lockdown for nearly two weeks, is preparing to open its second emergency facility, Leishenshan Hospital, on Thursday.
Around 2,000 medical workers are expected to treat patients in Leishanshan or Thunder God Hospital, which occupies 14 acres and has 1,600 beds. Ground was broken in Jiangxia District to the south of the city’s centre on January 26 and the project is due to be finished in the space of 12 days.
Huoshenshan or Fire God Mountain Hospital has received its first batch of patients after just 10 days of construction in the western suburbs of Wuhan. In the picture above, medical staff donning hazmat suits transfer one patient on February 4
The city of 14 million, which has been on lockdown for nearly two weeks, is preparing to open its second emergency facility on Thursday. In the picture above, medical staff transfer patients to Wuhan’s first coronavirus hospital on February 4
Death toll from the epidemic continues to rise in China as the country’s National Health Commission reported 64 new deaths and Hong Kong saw its first victim overnight. In the pictures above, patients are carried into Huoshenshan Hospital Tuesday
The deadly disease, which can spread between humans, has killed at least 493 people and infected over 24,600 globally
WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE DEADLY CORONAVIRUS IN CHINA?
Someone who is infected with the Wuhan coronavirus can spread it with just a simple cough or a sneeze, scientists say.
At least 493 people with the virus are now confirmed to have died and more than 24,600 have been infected in at least 28 countries and regions. But experts predict the true number of people with the disease could be 100,000, or even as high as 350,000 in Wuhan alone, as they warn it may kill as many as two in 100 cases. Here’s what we know so far:
What is the Wuhan coronavirus?
A coronavirus is a type of virus which can cause illness in animals and people. Viruses break into cells inside their host and use them to reproduce itself and disrupt the body’s normal functions. Coronaviruses are named after the Latin word ‘corona’, which means crown, because they are encased by a spiked shell which resembles a royal crown.
The coronavirus from Wuhan is one which has never been seen before this outbreak. It is currently named 2019-nCoV, and does not have a more detailed name because so little is known about it.
Dr Helena Maier, from the Pirbright Institute, said: ‘Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that infect a wide range of different species including humans, cattle, pigs, chickens, dogs, cats and wild animals.
‘Until this new coronavirus was identified, there were only six different coronaviruses known to infect humans. Four of these cause a mild common cold-type illness, but since 2002 there has been the emergence of two new coronaviruses that can infect humans and result in more severe disease (Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronaviruses).
‘Coronaviruses are known to be able to occasionally jump from one species to another and that is what happened in the case of SARS, MERS and the new coronavirus. The animal origin of the new coronavirus is not yet known.’
The first human cases were publicly reported from the Chinese city of Wuhan, where approximately 11million people live, after medics first started seeing infections on December 31.
By January 8, 59 suspected cases had been reported and seven people were in critical condition. Tests were developed for the new virus and recorded cases started to surge.
The first person died that week and, by January 16, two were dead and 41 cases were confirmed. The next day, scientists predicted that 1,700 people had become infected, possibly up to 7,000.
Just a week after that, there had been more than 800 confirmed cases and those same scientists estimated that some 4,000 – possibly 9,700 – were infected in Wuhan alone. By that point, 26 people had died.
By January 27, more than 2,800 people were confirmed to have been infected, 81 had died, and estimates of the total number of cases ranged from 100,000 to 350,000 in Wuhan alone.
By January 29, the number of deaths had risen to 132 and cases were in excess of 6,000.
Where does the virus come from?
According to scientists, the virus has almost certainly come from bats. Coronaviruses in general tend to originate in animals – the similar SARS and MERS viruses are believed to have originated in civet cats and camels, respectively.
The first cases of the virus in Wuhan came from people visiting or working in a live animal market in the city, which has since been closed down for investigation.
Although the market is officially a seafood market, other dead and living animals were being sold there, including wolf cubs, salamanders, snakes, peacocks, porcupines and camel meat.
A study by the Wuhan Institute of Virology, published in February 2020 in the scientific journal Nature, found that the genetic make-up virus samples found in patients in China is 96 per cent similar to a coronavirus they found in bats.
There may have been an animal which acted as a middle-man, contracting it from a bat before then transmitting it to a human, researchers suggested, although details of this are less clear.
Dr Michael Skinner, a virologist at Imperial College London, was not involved with the research but said: ‘The discovery definitely places the origin of nCoV in bats in China.
‘We still do not know whether another species served as an intermediate host to amplify the virus, and possibly even to bring it to the market, nor what species that host might have been.’
So far the fatalities are quite low. Why are health experts so worried about it?
Experts say the international community is concerned about the virus because so little is known about it and it appears to be spreading quickly.
It is similar to SARS, which infected 8,000 people and killed nearly 800 in an outbreak in Asia in 2003, in that it is a type of coronavirus which infects humans’ lungs.
Another reason for concern is that nobody has any immunity to the virus because they’ve never encountered it before. This means it may be able to cause more damage than viruses we come across often, like the flu or common cold.
Speaking at a briefing in January, Oxford University professor, Dr Peter Horby, said: ‘Novel viruses can spread much faster through the population than viruses which circulate all the time because we have no immunity to them.
‘Most seasonal flu viruses have a case fatality rate of less than one in 1,000 people. Here we’re talking about a virus where we don’t understand fully the severity spectrum but it’s possible the case fatality rate could be as high as two per cent.’
If the death rate is truly two per cent, that means two out of every 100 patients who get it will die.
‘My feeling is it’s lower,’ Dr Horby added. ‘We’re probably missing this iceberg of milder cases. But that’s the current circumstance we’re in.
‘Two per cent case fatality rate is comparable to the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1918 so it is a significant concern globally.’
How does the virus spread?
The illness can spread between people just through coughs and sneezes, making it an extremely contagious infection. And it may also spread even before someone has symptoms.
It is believed to travel in the saliva and even through water in the eyes, therefore close contact, kissing, and sharing cutlery or utensils are all risky.
Originally, people were thought to be catching it from a live animal market in Wuhan city. But cases soon began to emerge in people who had never been there, which forced medics to realise it was spreading from person to person.
There is now evidence that it can spread third hand – to someone from a person who caught it from another person.
What does the virus do to you? What are the symptoms?
Once someone has caught the virus it may take between two and 14 days for them to show any symptoms – but they may still be contagious during this time.
If and when they do become ill, typical signs include a runny nose, a cough, sore throat and a fever (high temperature). The vast majority of patients – at least 97 per cent, based on available data – will recover from these without any issues or medical help.
In a small group of patients, who seem mainly to be the elderly or those with long-term illnesses, it can lead to pneumonia. Pneumonia is an infection in which the insides of the lungs swell up and fill with fluid. It makes it increasingly difficult to breathe and, if left untreated, can be fatal and suffocate people.
What have genetic tests revealed about the virus?
Scientists in China have recorded the genetic sequences of around 19 strains of the virus and released them to experts working around the world.
This allows others to study them, develop tests and potentially look into treating the illness they cause.
Examinations have revealed the coronavirus did not change much – changing is known as mutating – much during the early stages of its spread.
However, the director-general of China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Gao Fu, yesterday said the virus was mutating and adapting as it spread through people.
This means efforts to study the virus and to potentially control it may be made extra difficult because the virus might look different every time scientists analyse it.
More study may be able to reveal whether the virus first infected a small number of people then change and spread from them, or whether there were various versions of the virus coming from animals which have developed separately.
How dangerous is the virus?
The virus has so far killed 490 people out of a total of at least 24,000 officially confirmed cases – a death rate of around two per cent. This is a similar death rate to the Spanish Flu outbreak which, in 1918, went on to kill around 50million people.
However, experts say the true number of patients is likely considerably higher and therefore the death rate considerably lower. Imperial College London researchers estimate that there were 4,000 (up to 9,700) cases in Wuhan city alone up to January 18 – officially there were only 444 there to date. If cases are in fact 100 times more common than the official figures, the virus may be far less dangerous than currently believed.
Experts say it is likely only the most seriously ill patients are seeking help and are therefore recorded – the vast majority will have only mild, cold-like symptoms. For those whose conditions do become more severe, there is a risk of developing pneumonia which can destroy the lungs and kill you.
Can the virus be cured?
The Wuhan coronavirus cannot currently be cured and it is proving difficult to contain.
Antibiotics do not work against viruses, so they are out of the question. Antiviral drugs can, but the process of understanding a virus then developing and producing drugs to treat it would take years and huge amounts of money.
No vaccine exists for the coronavirus yet and it’s not likely one will be developed in time to be of any use in this outbreak, for similar reasons to the above.
The National Institutes of Health in the US, and Baylor University in Waco, Texas, say they are working on a vaccine based on what they know about coronaviruses in general, using information from the SARS outbreak. But this may take a year or more to develop, according to Pharmaceutical Technology.
Currently, governments and health authorities are working to contain the virus and to care for patients who are sick and stop them infecting other people.
People who catch the illness are being quarantined in hospitals, where their symptoms can be treated and they will be away from the uninfected public.
And airports around the world are putting in place screening measures such as having doctors on-site, taking people’s temperatures to check for fevers and using thermal screening to spot those who might be ill (infection causes a raised temperature).
However, it can take weeks for symptoms to appear, so there is only a small likelihood that patients will be spotted up in an airport.
Is this outbreak an epidemic or a pandemic?
The outbreak is an epidemic, which is when a disease takes hold of one community such as a country or region.
Although it has spread to dozens of countries, the outbreak is not yet classed as a pandemic, which is defined by the World Health Organization as the ‘worldwide spread of a new disease’.
The head of WHO’s global infectious hazard preparedness, Dr Sylvie Briand, said: ‘Currently we are not in a pandemic. We are at the phase where it is an epidemic with multiple foci, and we try to extinguish the transmission in each of these foci,’ the Guardian reported.
She said that most cases outside of Hubei had been ‘spillover’ from the epicentre, so the disease wasn’t actually spreading actively around the world.
Source: Read Full Article