Wuhan coronavirus claims 81 lives, over 2700 confirmed cases in Mainland China

Chinese authorities on Monday announced that the death toll from the Wuhan coronavirus had reached 81 with as many as 2744 people confirmed to be infected in the country. 

15 cities across China, with a combined population of over 57 million people, have been placed under full or partial lockdown. Drastic travel restrictions have been imposed outside the epicentre of Wuhan, with Shandong province and four cities – Beijing, Shanghai, Xi'an and Tianjin – announcing bans on long-distance buses entering or leaving. In the southern province of Guangdong, Jiangxi in central China, three cities have made it mandatory for residents to wear face masks in public.

Chinese health authorities have also announced that the virus can be spread before symptoms appear, which means that carriers may not realise they are infected before they transmit the virus to others.

There are more than 50 confirmed cases in 13 places outside of mainland China, including at least five in the United States, five in Australia and four in Singapore. Other countries with confirmed cases are – Hong Kong, Thailand, Macau, Taiwan, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, France, Vietnam and Nepal.