February 18thDeaths increase to 1,873; infections rate drops
– Covid-19 death toll has increased to 1,873, with 98 new deaths in China, as of the end of 17 February. The total number of infection cases has exceeded 73,000, including 72,436 cases in mainland China.
– Chinese authorities have reported that new coronavirus confirmed cases outside the Hubei province recorded a drop for 14 consecutive days since 3 February.
Update: Diamond Princess cases reach 542; Taiwan plans repatriation
– The Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare confirmed that the number of cases on Diamond Princess has reached 542 of the 2,404 people tested.
– Taiwan announced plans to fly back its nationals who are onboard the cruise. Of more than 20 Taiwanese on the vessel, four have tested positive.
South Korea confirms 31st case
– The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) has reported the country’s 31st case – a 61-year-old South Korean woman currently in isolation.
UK and South Korea plan Diamond Princess evacuations
– South Korea is set to send an aircraft to Japan to bring back five passengers onboard the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship. The aircraft will take off today at Seoul Air Base in Seongnam, Seoul.
– The UK government is also planning to send a flight to Japan to evacuate its citizens from the ship