China facing 'grave situation' as Wuhan virus deaths increase, Xi says

China's President Xi Jinping said the nation faces a “grave situation” as the number of deaths in the Novel Coronavirus 2019-nCoV outbreak jumped to 42 on Saturday.

Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations also began Saturday, and fears of a pandemic have put a pall on celebrations.

President Xi held a politburo meeting on Saturday on ways to fight the “accelerating” outbreak, reported Chinese state television.

From Reuters on Saturday, January 25:

As of 8 p.m. local time (1200 GMT) on Saturday, the death toll in China had risen to 42, authorities reported. Some 1,372 people in China have been infected with the virus - traced to a seafood market in Wuhan that was illegally selling wildlife.

The virus has also been detected in Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Nepal, and the United States.

And you can now add Canada to that mix.

Patient zero in Canada was just confirmed in Toronto.

Wuhan city is located in Hubei province, and officials there are asking for help obtaining masks and protective suits.

“We are steadily pushing forward the disease control and prevention ... But right now we are facing an extremely severe public health crisis,” Hu Yinghai, deputy director-general of the Civil Affairs Department, told a news briefing.

Previous Boing Boing posts:

First Canada Wuhan virus case confirmed, more than 1,400 people worldwide now infected with 2019-nCoV

IMAGES, TOP, and BELOW courtesy of the Chinese government's Xinhua News.

Peng Zhiyong (C), head of the department of critical care medicine of Zhongnan Hospital, performs diagnosis on a patient with his colleagues in Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 24, 2020. Central China's Hubei province reported 105 new confirmed cases of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and seven new deaths on Thursday, the provincial health authorities announced Friday. (Xinhua/Xiong Qi)

Medical workers work in the ICU of Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 24, 2020. Central China's Hubei province reported 105 new confirmed cases of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and seven new deaths on Thursday, the provincial health authorities announced Friday. (Xinhua/Xiong Qi)

Medical workers work in the ICU of Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 24, 2020. Central China's Hubei province reported 105 new confirmed cases of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and seven new deaths on Thursday, the provincial health authorities announced Friday. (Xinhua/Xiong Qi)

Aerial photo taken on Jan. 24, 2020 shows mechanical equipment working at the construction site of a special hospital in the Caidian District of western suburb of Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. The central China metropolitan of Wuhan will follow Beijing's SARS treatment model to build a special hospital for admitting patients infected in the outbreak of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus.
The Wuhan headquarters for the control and treatment of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus said on Friday the upcoming hospital designed to have an area of 25,000 square meters will be put into use by Feb. 3. (Xinhua/Xiao Yijiu)

Aerial photo taken on Jan. 24, 2020 shows mechanical equipment working at the construction site of a special hospital in the Caidian District of western suburb of Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. The central China metropolitan of Wuhan will follow Beijing's SARS treatment model to build a special hospital for admitting patients infected in the outbreak of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus.
The Wuhan headquarters for the control and treatment of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus said on Friday the upcoming hospital designed to have an area of 25,000 square meters will be put into use by Feb. 3. (Xinhua/Xiao Yijiu)