Coronavirus live updates: China’s death toll hits 636, social media mourns doctor’s death

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Pedestrians wearing protective face masks walk though the Chinatown neighborhood of New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020.

Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images

This is a live blog. Please check back for updates.

All times below are in Beijing time.

8:40 am: Chinese social media erupts with condolences and anger over whistleblower doctor’s death

On Friday morning, the two most popular hashtags on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, were about the death of Dr. Li Wenliang, the doctor who was reprimanded by the government when he first sounded the alarm on the coronavirus.

Users of WeChat, China’s ubiquitous messaging app, also poured out condolences in their “moments” feed, which is akin to Facebook’s news feed.

The comments ranged from respect and sadness over the loss of a “hero,” to references of “Do you hear the People Sing” from Les Misérables and a remark from Li to Caixin news that, “A healthy society should not only have one voice.” 

8:16 am: China says death toll rises to 636, as total cases cross 31,000

China says there were an additional 73 deaths and 3,143 new cases of the coronavirus in China as of the end of Feb. 6, the National Health Commission said in its daily update on Friday.

This brings the total number of deaths in China to 636 and the cumulative number of confirmed cases to 31,161, the government said.

Most of those who died on Thursday were from Hubei — the epicenter of the outbreak.

All times below are in Eastern time.

6:15 pm: Pentagon sets up more military bases to take in quarantined Americans

The Pentagon identified 11 military installations near major airports that can support those evacuated from China, where the current outbreak originated. Department of Defense personnel won’t be in direct contact with the evacuees and will minimize contact with personnel supporting the evacuees, officials said. The bases are in Hawaii, Illinois, Texas, California, Georgia, New York, Washington state, New Jersey, Michigan and the District of Columbia. — Macias

5:25 pm: Hubei reports an additional 2,447 cases, 69 deaths

China’s Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, reported an additional 69 deaths and 2,447 cases over the previous 24-hour period. The Hubei Provincial Health Committee said that this brings the total confirmed cases in the province to 22,112 and totals deaths in the province to 618. — Feuer

3:55 pm: Hit to global economy will be worse than SARS

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