BEIJING: The death toll due to the novel coronavirus outbreak in China has increased to 2,788, health authorities said on Friday, while the number of confirmed cases has risen to 78,824.

Chinese health authorities said it received reports of 327 new confirmed cases of novel coronavirus infection and 44 deaths on Thursday from 31 provincial-level regions and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, Xinhua reported. Among the deaths, 41 were in Hubei Province, two in Beijing and one in the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, according to the China's National Health Commission. 452 more suspected cases were reported on Thursday, said the commission. On Thursday, 3,622 people were discharged from hospital after recovery, while the number of severe cases decreased by 394 to 7,952. The overall confirmed cases on the mainland had reached 78,824 by the end of Thursday, and 2,788 people had died of the disease.

The commission added that 2,308 people were still suspected of being infected with the virus. A total of 36,117 people had been discharged from hospital after recovery. The commission said 656,054 close contacts had been traced, adding that among them, 10,525 were discharged from medical observation Thursday, with 65,225 others still under medical observation. By the end of Thursday, 93 confirmed cases including two deaths had been reported in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), 10 confirmed cases in the Macao SAR, and 32 in Taiwan including one death. Twenty six patients in Hong Kong, eight in Macao and six in Taiwan had been discharged from hospital after recovery. (IANS)

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