Seventh death from novel coronavirus recorded

The Taiwanese Centers for Disease Control said on Friday that the death of a patient in Saudi Arabia on February 10 from a novel coronavirus pushed the worldwide death toll to seven.

The victim was admitted to a hospital on January 29 after becoming infected with the virus, according to a notice from the World Health Organization. The most recent case increased the number of confirmed infections of the new virus to 13, Focus Taiwan reports.

Three of the cases of the novel virus were potentially transmitted through close person-to-person contact.

The novel coronavirus is closely related to the virus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome. The virus causes symptoms similar to SARS, including coughing, breathing difficulties and fever.

The SARS virus killed approximately 10 percent of the 8,000 people it infected worldwide in 2002, Reuters reports.

CDC Deputy Director-General Chou Jih-haw said that Taiwanese nationals planning to visit the Middle East should take precautions, including the maintenance of personal hygiene and the avoidance of close contact with individuals who have respiratory illness.

Jih-Haw urged travelers arriving in Taiwan from the Middle East with similar symptoms to report to airport officials to receive an examination or quarantine if necessary, Focus Taiwan reports.