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Wuhan Doctor Who Tried To Warn China About Coronavirus Dies Of The Disease At Age 34

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Hadeel Abdelkariem, Feb 6, 2020.

  1. Hadeel Abdelkariem

    Hadeel Abdelkariem Golden Member

    Apr 1, 2018
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    Topline: Li Wenliang, a Wuhan doctor and hospital worker who reportedly tried to warn the Chinese public about the emerging coronavirus, died of the disease Thursday according to multiple reports—after Chinese state media reported Li died, then deleted those stories before saying he was instead critically ill.


    • According to CNN, after seeing patients exhibiting similar symptoms, Li attempted to warn the public about a “SARS-like” disease in December 2019 through posts on WeChat, a popular Chinese social networking app.
    • Although Li asked friends to share the information privately, the posts went viral and his name was not blurred out.
    • Li was subsequently reprimanded by Wuhan police and forced to sign a letter accusing him of “spreading rumors online” and “severely disrupting social order.”
    • CNN reported that Li was hospitalized January 12 and was formally diagnosed with coronavirus on February 1.
    • “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Dr. Li Wenliang,” wrote the World Health Organization (WHO) on Twitter, adding that “we all need to celebrate the work he did on [coronavirus].”
    • China’s highest court ended up scolding Wuhan’s police in January, saying if officials there had “believed those ‘rumors,’ and wore masks, used disinfectant and avoided going to the wildlife market as if there were a SARS outbreak, perhaps it would’ve meant we could better control the coronavirus today.”
    • Chinese state media and Wuhan hospital now report Li is critically ill, not dead, and had deleted earlier reports that said Li was deceased.

    Crucial quote: “Finally diagnosed,” Li wrote on February 1 in what became his last post on Weibo, another Chinese social networking platform. The post drew tens of thousands of comments from well-wishers, including one who wrote “Dr. Li, you are a good doctor with conscience,” according to a translation. According to the Post, Guan Hanfeng, an orthopedist at Wuhan’s Tongji Hospital and Luo Yu, a technology industry executive who was one of Li’s classmates, broke the news of his death.

    Key background: Just 2 of the over 560 coronavirus deaths have occurred outside of China, while more than 28,000 people have been infected. WHO declared the virus an international health emergency on January 30, 2020, but has not yet classified the outbreak as a pandemic despite its continued spread. The U.S. has 11 confirmed cases, and flights from China are being redirected to 11 American airports that are screening those travelers. The illness, which first broke out in a Wuhan food market in December, has since spread to almost 30 countries and impacted local tourism and travel. Companies like McDonald’s, Starbucks, IKEA, Hyundai, Tesla, Disney and more have temporarily closed their doors in affected areas. The country of Macau, considered the world’s gambling capital, shut down its casino business Tuesday in response to the outbreak, which has sickened 10 people there. Several countries, including the U.S., are denying entry to visitors from Wuhan and advising against travel to China, while several international airlines have suspended flights to the country. Millions on the mainland have been on lockdown since the Lunar New Year holiday ended January 25, 2020.

    What to watch for: More reported cases of coronavirus. Three Americans aboard a Diamond Princess cruise ship were confirmed to have the disease Thursday, with a total of 20 passengers diagnosed. The ship is docked and quarantined in Japan’s Yokohama harbor. WHO announced Thursday it will convene a global forum in Geneva February 11 and 12, 2020, to accelerate research and innovation in responding to the virus.


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