TIMELINE: The new coronavirus outbreak

Research by Rose Carmelle Lacuata, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 04 2020 03:55 PM | Updated as of Feb 04 2020 04:17 PM


MANILA - The 2019 Novel Coronavirus has been identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness that has spread from China and 24 other countries.

As of February 4, it has taken the lives of at least 425 people in China alone.

Here is the timeline of the 2019-nCoV outbreak:

December 31, 2019

China said it is investigating an outbreak of viral pneumonia originating in the city of Wuhan in Hubei province.

At that time, there were at least 27 cases of viral pneumonia in Wuhan. 

The outbreak led to speculations of a disease similar to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, a highly contagious respiratory disease, which killed 349 people in mainland China and another 299 in Hong Kong in 2003.

January 5, 2020

The Philippines' Department of Health ordered a tighter screening of travelers amid reports of a "mysterious disease" from China, which has affected 44 persons at that time.

The illness was described as something similar to "viral pneumonia of unknown origin."

January 6, 2019

China said the mysterious viral pneumonia is not the flu-like virus SARS, which killed hundreds in 2003.

Authorities said the infection in Wuhan broke out between December 12 and 29, with some of the patients employed at a seafood market in the city that has since been closed for disinfection.

January 9, 2020

The World Health Organization said the pneumonia cases in China may be due to a new kind of coronavirus.

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can cause infections ranging from the common cold to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Some of the virus types cause less severe disease, while some - like the one that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) - are far more severe.

January 11, 2020

China reported the first death due to the new coronavirus.

The patient was a 61-year-old man who died from pneumonia. He was a regular buyer at the seafood market, who had been previously diagnosed with abdominal tumors and chronic liver disease.

Forty-one others have also been diagnosed with the virus.

January 13, 2020

The World Health Organization confirmed the first case of the new coronavirus in Thailand.

The person travelling from Wuhan, China had been hospitalized in Thailand after being diagnosed with mild pneumonia.

January 16, 2020

Japan confirmed its first case of infection from the new coronavirus.

A man in his 30s from Kanagawa prefecture tested positive of the virus.

January 17, 2020

China reported its second death due to the new coronavirus.

Local authorities said a 69-year-old man died on Wednesday in Wuhan, the central Chinese city believed to be the epicenter of an outbreak of a coronavirus from the same family as the deadly SARS pathogen.

Meanwhile, Thailand reported its second case connected to the virus. The 74-year-old Chinese woman was diagnosed with pneumonia linked to the new coronavirus.

January 20, 2020

The new coronavirus spreads to other parts of China, including Beijing.

A third person was also confirmed to have died.

The Republic of Korea also reported its first case of the new coronavirus.

January 21, 2020

China reported the new coronavirus is contagious between humans.

A fourth person, an 89-year-old man from Wuhan, died from pneumonia connected to the new coronavirus, as new cases jump to almost 300.

January 22, 2020

Taiwan reported its first case of the new coronavirus. The patient is a Taiwanese woman in her fifties, living in Wuhan, who returned to the island with symptoms including fever, coughing and a sore throat.

The United States also announced its first case of the new coronavirus. The patient is a US resident in his 30s who lives near Seattle, is in good condition, according to federal and state officials, and approached authorities himself after reading about the SARS-like infection in news reports.

Hong Kong, likewise, confirmed its first case of the virus. The patient arrived in Hong Kong via high-speed railway from the mainland.

Macau also confirmed its first case, 52-year-old businessman from Wuhan who arrived in the city by high-speed rail.

Meanwhile, Thailand confirmed its fourth case, a 73-year-old Thai woman who had traveled to Wuhan during the New Year holidays.

January 23, 2020

China put millions of people on lockdown in two cities at the epicenter of a coronavirus outbreak.

Most transport in Wuhan, a city of 11 million people, was suspended on Thursday and people were told not to leave. Hours later, neighboring Huanggang, a city of about 7 million people, announced a similar lockdown.

Beijing cancelled large gatherings, including two Lunar New Year temple fairs, and closed the Forbidden City, the capital's most famous tourist attraction, to visitors until further notice.

Philippine aviation also banned flights to the Chinese city of Wuhan as a precaution.

Meanwhile, Singapore confirmed its first case of the 2019-nCoV. The patient was a 66-year-old man from Wuhan who arrived in Singapore with his family.

Two Chinese nationals in Vietnam also tested positive of the virus.

A Chinese man living in Ho Chi Minh City was infected by his father who traveled to Vietnam on January 13 from the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the virus. 

The father was hospitalized on January 17 with a high fever, days before his son showed symptoms, health officials said. 

January 24, 2020

Japan and South Korea confirmed the second coronavirus case in their respective countries.

China also confirmed the second virus death outside of Wuhan. The death was in the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, which borders Russia and is some 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles) from Wuhan, the local government said.

It follows confirmation Thursday of the first death outside the epicenter -- an 80-year-old man diagnosed with the new virus in northern Hebei province, who died on Jan. 22.

France, meanwhile, confirmed its first 2 cases of the Wuhan coronavirus, while Thailand reported its fifth case.

January 25, 2020

China shut down 13 cities due to the outbreak, as the death toll climbs to 41.

France also reported a third case in the country, the patient a relative of the first two.

Both Australia and Malaysia confirmed the first cases of coronavirus infection in their respective countries, while Japan reported its third case.

January 26, 2020

Canada declared the first "presumptive" confirmed case of the deadly coronavirus in a resident who had returned from the central Chinese city of Wuhan.

Ontario health officials told a news conference the patient is a male in his 50s, who arrived in Toronto on Jan. 22 and was hospitalized the next day after developing symptoms of respiratory illness.

January 27, 2020

A patient in California's Orange County was confirmed as the third person on US soil infected with the new deadly virus that originated in China, health officials said.

The infected person was a traveler from Wuhan, the Chinese city at the epicenter of the outbreak, the Orange County Health Care Agency said.

January 28, 2020

A senior Sri Lankan health official confirmed the first case of coronavirus in the country.

The patient is a Chinese lady in her 40s who arrived in Sri Lanka as a tourist on Jan. 19 and fell ill on Jan. 25.

Health authorities in Germany's southern Bavarian region have also confirmed the country's first case of the deadly coronavirus spreading in China.

Japan, likewise, confirmed two more cases of confirmed 2019-nCoV infections. Among the patients was a tour bus driver who has never been to Wuhan.

Taiwan also reported its first case of domestic transmission of the new coronavirus. 

The latest patient, Taiwan's eight case, was the first case of transmission on the island as in all the previous cases the people had been infected first in China.

Meanwhile, the Philippines stopped issuing visas on arrival to Chinese nationals, in a bid to keep the southeast Asian nation free of a new virus that has killed 106 and infected more than 4,500 since emerging in China in December.

January 29, 2020

China confirmed 5,974 cases, overtaking the number of people infected in the mainland by the SARS epidemic in 2002-2003.

China's national health commission reported more than 1,400 confirmed new cases, as the death toll rose to 132.

There were 5,327 confirmed cases in mainland China during the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome epidemic.

That outbreak killed more than 770 people globally, including 349 in mainland China.

Meanwhile, Malaysia confirmed 3 new cases of new coronavirus infection, bringing the total number of cases to 7.

January 30, 2020

The Philippines confirmed its first case of the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). 

In a press conference, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said a 38-year-old Chinese patient from Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak, was confirmed to be infected with the virus following a laboratory test in Australia. 

Finland and India also confirmed the respective countries' first cases of infection, while Vietnam confirmed three new cases.

China's Tibet Autonomous Region, likewise, confirmed its first case of a patient with a new pneumonia-causing coronavirus, health authorities said, meaning the infection has spread to all of the country's 31 provincial-level regions.

The death toll across China from the new virus has increased to 170, including nearly 130 in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, while at least 7,800 cases of infection have been identified, official media reported.

January 31, 2020

The World Health Organization (WHO) said it was declaring the China coronavirus outbreak that has killed 170 people in China a global emergency, as cases spread to 18 countries.

The United States reported its first case of person-to-person transmission, the fifth country outside China to do so. Experts say cases of person-to-person transmission outside China are especially concerning because they suggest greater potential for the virus to spread further.

The number of confirmed deaths from China's coronavirus outbreak has risen to 212 after worst-hit Hubei province reported 42 new fatalities on Friday.

Meanwhile, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte ordered a ban on travelers from China's Hubei province as authorities monitor 31 people who traveled to China recently and showed symptoms related to the new coronavirus, the Department of Health (DOH) said.

The tally includes a 38-year-old woman from Wuhan, China -- the epicenter of the outbreak -- who earlier tested positive for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus acute respiratory disease (2019-nCoV ARD) becoming the first confirmed case in the Philippines, said Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo.

February 1, 2020

Following the confirmation of the first case of coronavirus infection in the Philippines, authorities called on the public to remain calm and avoid discriminating against anyone amid the rapid spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus.

Several airlines also announced flight cancellations between the Philippines and mainland China and its territories amid the outbreak of the new coronavirus.

February 2, 2020

The Philippine representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that the first novel coronavirus-related death outside China was recorded in the Philippines.

Tagged as the Philippines' second confirmed 2019-nCoV case, a 44-year-old Chinese man, who arrived from Wuhan, China via Hong Kong last Jan. 21, 2020, died on Saturday, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said.

Hours before the WHO made the announcement, the Philippine government imposed a ban on travelers from China and its territories as the new coronavirus' toll continued to climb in the mainland.

The ban covers all foreigners arriving from China, Hong Kong and Macau, including those who visited these areas within 14 days, Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea said in a statement.

Airlines all over the world are also suspending flights to China in the wake of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak.

February 3, 2020

President Rodrigo Duterte sought to allay fears over the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) that has spread from China, killing over 300 people and infecting several thousand others.

The Philippines has reported two confirmed cases of the 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease, involving two Chinese tourists who came from the Chinese city of Wuhan where the virus originated. One of the patients died on Saturday.

Health officials said Monday it has probed 80 people so far for possible contraction of the 2019-nCoV ARD, although only two have yielded positive results. Thirty tested negative, while the results for the remaining 48 are still pending.

Meanwhile, China's death toll from the coronavirus epidemic soared past 360 on Monday, with deepening global concern about the outbreak and governments closing their borders to people from China.

February 4, 2020

Hong Kong reported its first coronavirus death on Tuesday, a 39-year-old male who had been suffering from an underlying illness and had visited China's Wuhan city in January. It is the second death due to coronavirus outside mainland China.

China reports a total of 425 confirmed deaths due to the novel coronavirus after authorities in Hubei province reported 64 new fatalities Tuesday. Coronavirus infections in China now reach 19,550, based on numbers previously issued by the central government.