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On December 31, 2019, China reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, caused by a novel coronavirus, currently designated 2019-nCoV. Mounting cases and deaths pose major public health and governance challenges. China’s imposition of an unprecedented cordon sanitaire (a guarded area preventing anyone from leaving) in Hubei Province has also sparked controversy concerning its implementation and effectiveness. Cases have now spread to at least 4 continents. As of January 28, there are more than 4500 confirmed cases (98% in China) and more than 100 deaths.1 In this Viewpoint, we describe the current status of 2019-nCoV, assess the response, and offer proposals for strategies to bring the outbreak under control.
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Corresponding Author: Lawrence O. Gostin, JD, O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, Georgetown University Law Center, 600 New Jersey Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001 (email@example.com).
Published Online: January 30, 2020. doi:10.1001/jama.2020.1097
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Mr Gostin is the director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law. No other disclosures were reported.
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