Expert: Novel coronavirus outbreak may peak in mid-to-late February

Zhong nanshan.jpeg

Chinese renowned respiratory scientist Zhong Nanshan receives an interview with Xinhua in Guangzhou, South China's Guangdong province, Jan 28, 2020. (File photo: Xinhua)

Chinese respiratory expert Zhong Nanshan on Tuesday predicted that the novel coronavirus pneumonia (NCP) epidemic will reach its peak in mid-to-late February, based on data model analysis.

Zhong made the remarks at a teleconsultation with a medical team working in Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak. 

It's hard to predict when the inflection point will come, said Zhong, adding that it depends on the prevention and control work during the travel peak.

The fatality rate of NCP is lower than the rate of SARS and MERS, said Zhong.

The expert also called for continuing prevention efforts to ensure early detection and early quarantine, saying the situation in Wuhan will improve, but it is still in a difficult time now.