Updated Feb 6, 2020 - Health

Coronavirus kills Chinese doctor who warned of outbreak

People sit in an airport.

Passengers wear protective facemasks in the departure hall of Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi. Photo: Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP via Getty Images

The Chinese doctor, who sounded the alarm on the potential of a deadly coronavirus outbreak, has died after contracting the virus. The Wuhan Central Hospital has confirmed his death, after there was a period of confusion in the media.

Why it matters: Li Wenliang, 34, was an ophthalmologist at Wuhan Central Hospital. In December he sent a warning to other physicians about the potential of a respiratory illness he had seen in several patients, per the Washington Post. Chinese authorities ordered him and other doctors to stop promulgating "rumors" about the SARS-like cases.

  • He confirmed he contracted the disease in a social media post on Jan. 31, per the Post.
  • That virus, now identified as the coronavirus, has killed more than 560 people and infected over 28,000 in mainland China.

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Editor's note: This piece is being updated with new information.

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