Chinese doctor Li Wenliang, one of the eight doctors who tried to warn about the appearance of the coronavirus, has died, as confirmed by medical sources at the Wuhan Central Hospital, in the homonymous town and epicenter of the virus outbreak.
“In the fight against the pneumonia epidemic that the new coronavirus brings, our ophthalmologist Li Wenliang was unfortunately infected. He has died despite all the efforts made to resuscitate him. We deeply regret his death,” the hospital said.
His death has been certified at 2.58 this Friday (local time), according to information from the local newspaper 'South China Morning Post'.
The hospital's statements clear doubts about Li's status after various media outlets reported his death while he was still in critical condition.
The director of the health emergency program of the World Health Organization (WHO), Michael Ryan, expressed his condolences for the death of the doctor before the hospital confirmed it.
Although China is the epicenter of the outbreak and the most affected country, with 565 dead and more than 28,000 infected, the coronavirus has already spread to other countries in Southeast Asia and cases have also been detected in Europe and America.
Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough and shortness of breath. In more severe cases, the infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.
In 2003, more than 600 people had died in China because of the outbreak of SARS or acute respiratory syndrome that was first detected in 2002, while the global figure reached 765 deaths.