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Video: Medical staff shave heads to reduce risk of coronavirus spread

Reuters/Beijing
Filed on February 13, 2020
wuhan, hair shaving medical staff, coronavirus, covid19

(Reuters)

About 60,000 people have now been confirmed to have the virus, the vast majority of them in China.

Doctors and nurses in China's Wuhan city are cutting their hair short or shaving their heads to avoid cross-infection while treating coronavirus patients

The Chinese province at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak reported a record rise in deaths and thousands more cases on Thursday under a new diagnostic method, raising fresh questions about the scale of the crisis.

Health officials in China's central province of Hubei said 242 people had died from the flu-like virus on Wednesday, the fastest rise in the daily count since the pathogen was identified in December.

That took total deaths in China from the newly discovered virus to 1,367, up 254 from the previous day, the National Health Commission said.

About 60,000 people have now been confirmed to have the virus, the vast majority of them in China.

The new diagnostic procedure could explain the spike in deaths, said Raina McIntyre, head of biosecurity research at the Kirby Institute at the University of New South Wales.

"Presumably, there are deaths which occurred in people who did not have a lab diagnosis but did have a CT," she told Reuters. "It is important that these also be counted."

The new testing is only being used in Hubei, officials said.

Wuhan, a city of 11 million people, remains under virtual lockdown, and other major Chinese cities face severe restrictions.


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