A high-ranking doctor from the city of Wuhan passed away on Tuesday, Feb 18, after contracting the new coronavirus. The Wuchang Hospital director's health was reportedly deteriorating since the new virus broke out.
Dr. Liu Zhiming, 50, passed away on Tuesday morning. The Chinese state media confirmed his death on Tuesday after the previous speculation of his death was revealed through a tweet on Monday. The tweet was quickly removed because the provincial health commission covering Wuhan said that the news was false. They said that the doctor was being "resuscitated." Another state-run media also said that Liu passed away on Monday.
According to the Chinese media reports, the neurosurgery expert was a healthy person before the infection.
The mirroring confusion
The reports had the same trait as the initial reports of Li Wenliang, 33, a doctor from the Wuhan Central hospital who passed away on February 7. The doctor was silenced by Beijing when he tried to spread awareness about the new virus that is spreading in the country.
The initial reports when Li died followed a lot of outrage from the public and social media. His hospital contradicted the statements until they finally admitted the death of the doctor.
The uncertainty over Li's death is also reflected in the director's death as well. The reports about Liu's death was retracted from several media outlets after the state denied that he was dead.
The health workers in the city of Wuhan and elsewhere in China have been under threat of being infected since the early stages of the detection of the virus. Several cases were reported where the health care providers were infected by the disease while they were at work.
The Wuchang hospital is yet to comment on the doctor's death.
Developments to cleanse the city
Communist Party chief of Wuhan on Monday declared a three day cleanse of the city where the doctors will go door to door checking on the residents for symptoms of the disease. The suspected will be taken to the hospital and checked for the virus. The virus has already infected more than 73,000 people and claimed the lives of at least 1,800.