Health officials warn coronavirus is more lethal than seasonal flu

Geneva - The World Health Organization affirms that the global death rate from the disease caused by the new coronavirus is 3.4% — far deadlier than the seasonal flu.  The warning came as the number of coronavirus deaths outside of China surpassed the number inside China for the first time.

In the U.S., Washington state reported another coronavirus death — the ninth in the region.  In New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio said a Manhattan lawyer has become the second person in the city to test positive for the new coronavirus.  Officials have closed two separate schools in the Bronx attended by the patient’s sons.  So far they have not tested positive.  Two other schools in New York’s northern suburbs are also closed out of what officials called “an abundance of caution.”

The Wall Street Journal reports the Donald Trump administration is considering using a national disaster program to cover the cost of treating coronavirus in some of the 27 million Americans without health coverage. The nation’s largest union of registered nurses, National Nurses United, has called the nation’s public health system “woefully unprepared” for the pandemic and demanded that once a vaccine is developed, it should be made free to the public.

Elsewhere, Chile and Argentina recorded their first coronavirus cases, while the death toll in Iran jumped to 92.  On Wall Street, the Dow Jones dropped nearly 800 points Tuesday on new fears about the virus’s toll on the global economy.  Tuesday’s stock market drop came even though the Federal Reserve ordered a half a percentage point cut to interest rates.

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