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China confirms 1st death outside epicenter of coronavirus outbreak; expands lockdowns to 25 million

Chinese officials say the number of cases of the new coronavirus has grown to more than 800, with 25 people killed.

BEIJING, China — China broadened its unprecedented, open-ended lockdowns to encompass around 25 million people to try to contain a deadly new virus. 

Experts admit, however, that the measures' potential for success is uncertain. 

At least eight cities have been shut down, all of them in central China's Hubei province, where the illness has been concentrated. 

Normally bustling streets were eerily quiet. Masks were common. Major public events were canceled, including traditional temple fairs popular during the Lunar New Year. 

The number of cases has risen to 830 in China, with 25 deaths. 

The first death was confirmed outside Hubei, but the vast majority of cases around China and abroad still have ties to Wuhan, the Hubei provincial capital where the illnesses began last month.

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China's National Health Commission provided the update Friday morning that the number of cases of a new respiratory virus has risen to 830 and also confirmed the first death outside of Hubei. 

The health commission in Hebei, a northern province bordering Beijing, said an 80-year-old man died after showing symptoms upon his return from a two-month stay in Wuhan to see relatives.

Credit: AP
A militia member uses a digital thermometer to take a driver's temperature at a checkpoint at a highway toll gate in Wuhan in central China's Hubei Province, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020.