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Beijing, February 21, 2020
China today reported 118 more deaths due to novel coronavirus (COVID-19 infection, taking the toll in the epidemic that has hit the country to 2,236 so far.
Xinhua, the official Chinese news agency, quoted the country's health authorities as saying that 889 new confirmed cases of the disease had been reported from 31 provincial-level regions on Thursday.
Among the new deaths, 115 were in Hubei, the worst-affected province, and one each in Zhejiang, Chongqing and Yunnan.
Another 1,614 new suspected cases were reported Thursday, the report said.
"China's daily number of newly cured and discharged novel coronavirus patients has surpassed that of new confirmed infections for a third consecutive day.
"Thursday saw 2,109 people walk out of hospital after recovery, much higher than the number of the same day's new confirmed infections, which was 889.
"A total of 18,264 patients infected with the novel coronavirus had been discharged from hospital after recovery by the end of Thursday," the report said.
Thursday was second consecutive day that the daily number of new infections in the country remained under 1,000. The newly recovered coronavirus patients in both Hubei Province and its capital city of Wuhan outnumbered new infections Thursday, it said.
By the end of Thursday, 68 confirmed cases including two deaths had been reported in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), 10 confirmed cases in the Macao SAR, and 24 in Taiwan including one death.
Hubei reported 631 new confirmed cases and 115 new deaths Thursday. The latest report brought the total confirmed cases in the worst-hit province to 48,730. Wuhan, the provincial capital, recorded a total of 37,448 confirmed cases.
Xinhua also said that no new confirmed cases of COVID-19 were reported on Thursday in 14 provinces.
The Tibet Autonomous Region in southwest China has reported zero new confirmed cases since January 30 and Qinghai Province in northwest China has reported no new cases in 15 consecutive days, said Zeng Yixin, deputy director of the National Health Commission (NHC), at a press conference.
Four areas -- Liaoning, Guizhou, Gansu and Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region -- have reported zero new cases for four consecutive days.