Iran confirms 13 more coronavirus cases, 2 more deaths

The latest: 

  • Iran confirms 13 more cases of COVID-19 and 2 more deaths, for a total of 18 cases and 4 deaths.
  • South Korea declares health emergency in its 4th-largest city amid concern about new cases.
  • Canadian charter flight with Diamond Princess passengers who were cleared after 2-week quarantine lands at CFB Trenton in Ontario.
  • B.C. health officials report 6th presumptive case in province.
  • WATCH: Experts are starting to identify patterns of how the coronavirus is spread.

Iran confirmed 13 new coronavirus cases and two deaths among the group of new cases, Health Ministry spokesperson Kianush Jahanpur said in a tweet on Friday.

The new cases comprised seven people diagnosed in Qom, four in Tehran and two in Gilan, Jahanpur said in the tweet.

The total number of cases in Iran now stands at 18, with four of those people having died.

In South Korea, the government banned major rallies in its capital and declared a health emergency in its fourth-largest city as 100 new virus cases were reported Friday, bringing the country’s total to 204.

Prime Minister Chung Se-kyun said in a televised statement the central government will concentrate its support to the southeastern region to ease a shortage in sickbeds, medical personnel and equipment.

“A month into the outbreak, we have entered an emergency phase,” Chung said. “Our efforts until now had been focused on blocking the illness from entering the country. But we will now shift the focus on preventing the illness from spreading further in local communities.”

A medical professional is seen Friday at a preliminary testing facility at the National Medical Center in Seoul, where patients suspected of contracting COVID-19 are assessed. (Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

The spike forced officials to focus on steps to contain the domestic spread of the disease, not just its entry from abroad.

Most of the new cases have been reported since Wednesday. The increase, especially in and around Daegu city in the southeast, has raised fears the outbreak is overwhelming the region’s medical system. Many of the cases have been linked to a church in the city.

In China, the epicentre of the outbreak, health officials reported a total of 75,465 cases on the mainland, with 2,236 deaths. 

The country’s national health commission said 18,264 patients “had been cured and discharged from hospital.”

“There still remained 54,965 confirmed cases (including 11,633 in serious condition) and 5,206 suspected cases.”

WATCH: Infectious disease experts are starting to identify patterns of the disease’s spread

Infectious disease experts are starting to identify patterns of how the coronavirus is spread and which cases may be most severe as the number of new cases appears to decline. 1:58

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