BEIJING (AP) – China on Friday reported another sharp rise in the number of people infected with the new virus, as the death toll closer to 1,400.
The National Health Commission said 121 more people were killed and there were 5,090 confirmed cases of the new.
The number of reported cases has increased faster after the hardest-hit provinces to change the method to calculate them on Thursday. Now there are 63 851 confirmed cases in the Chinese mainland, 1,380 have died.
Hubei Province is now included cases based on the doctor’s diagnosis and before they have been confirmed by laboratory tests. Of the 5,090 new cases, 3095 fall into that category.
An acceleration in the number of cases does not necessarily represent a sudden spike in new infections of the virus that causes COVID-19 as revised methodology.
Health Commission of China said that the change was intended to identify the alleged cases in which the patient has pneumonia so that they can be treated more quickly and reduce the possibility of a more serious disease or death. It was also seen as a reflection of the chaotic crush on people seeking treatment and struggle to compete with deposits of untested samples.
“Obviously in Wuhan, the health system is under extreme stress and so the first priority must be patient,” said Mark Woolhouse, a professor of infectious disease epidemiology at the University of Edinburgh.