The first coronavirus case happened one year ago today, according to China
Government records suggest that the first coronavirus case was recorded on 17 November 2019.
One year ago, the novel virus Covid-19 was first recorded as having infected a human, marking the start of a global pandemic that has so far killed 1.33 million people and infected 55.1 million.
According to records from the Chinese government, the first case of coronavirus was on 17 November 2019, weeks before authorities announced a new disease.
Documents seen by The South China Morning Post earlier this year suggested this date was based on Chinese government data.
This first infected person – coined “patient zero” – is thought to have been a 55-year-old Hubei resident, but this is yet to be confirmed.
Meanwhile, the Chinese government did not officially identify a positive case of coronavirus until 8 December 2019, and has since been widely criticised over attempts to cover up the virus during its early weeks of transmission.
The leaked government records have not been released to the public, yet provide valuable insight for scientists into early transmissions of coronavirus, generally thought to have jumped from an animal into humans.
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