Maps: Where the Wuhan Coronavirus Has Spread

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The Wuhan coronavirus, a mysterious respiratory infection, has sickened more than 540 people in Asia and one person in the United States, according to official counts. It’s likely that other cases have so far gone unreported. As of Wednesday, at least 17 people have died.


Confirmed cases



Sources: National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China; Hubei provincial government. Note: Data as of 11 p.m, Jan. 22 local time.

The outbreak began in a seafood and poultry market in Wuhan, a city of 11 million in central China. Officials are imposing restrictions on travel out of Wuhan and stepping up screening at transportation hubs.

The exact source of the virus and how many people are at risk remains unclear. The virus can spread from person to person, according to a prominent Chinese scientist, but it is not known how easily.

How big could the outbreak be?

Researchers at Northeastern University and Imperial College London estimated that the number of cases may be five or 10 times higher than what has been reported.

The most likely number is around 4,000 cases, according to the estimates, which will change as more information about the virus becomes known.


Estimated number of coronavirus cases





Probability

of outcome

Estimates say there may be closer to 4,000 cases of coronavirus in Wuhan.

There are

around 500

confirmed cases.

Number of cases

Probability

of outcome

Estimates say there may be closer to 4,000 cases of coronavirus in Wuhan.

There are around

500 confirmed cases.

The likelihood of more than 8,000 cases is low.

Number of cases

These estimates are based on an analysis of the population of Wuhan, the number of cases detected outside of China and the number of people who travel from Wuhan to other areas. Public health officials still do not know how the disease is transmitted, and experts urged caution in interpreting the estimates.

“These are very early models that make several assumptions based on what evidence is available,” said David Heymann, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “They aren’t truth — they’re just one step in trying to better understand this outbreak.”

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