Coronavirus infections reach over 66,000 and death toll tops 1,500 in China

BEIJING —Infections with the virus that causes COVID-19 have reached 66,492 in China, with 1,523 deaths and 11,053 people in critical condition, the country’s National Health Commission announced Saturday.

The figures showed a sharp drop in the number of new infections compared to Friday.

However, with 143 new deaths recorded within the last 24-hour interval, fatalities have remained consistent in recent days. The death toll passed the 1,000 mark for the first time Tuesday.

The novel coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan, the capital of central China’s Hubei province, in December last year has spread to more than two dozen countries and caused a global health scare.

On Friday, China for the first time released statistics on infections among health care workers in the country, confirming that more than 1,700 hospital staff members had become infected, and six had died.

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