Events that made Coronavirus so deadly – A Timeline

Learn how the brand new virus has claimed an astonishing 47,000 lives and has infected almost 10,00,00 people worldwide

Should we praise the Chinese government for taking a swift action during this crisis? No, we shouldn’t. If you go through the whole timeline and the chain of events leading up to the worst Pandemic of this century, you would realize, what led to its severity. We underestimated the deadliness of the virus and our response to its rage was more like beating around the bush but instead, we should have dealt with it head-on.

Many European countries took it too lightly and now the US that had the same approach is bearing the brunt of the menacing cousin of the well known SARS virus.

You can go through the timeline as reported to various news channels around the world compiled into an easily understandable chronology of events leading up to the “worst crisis” of modern times.


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Below is a timeline.

17 Nov 2019

Government records suggest first person infected with new disease

A 55-year-old shrimp seller from the province of Hubei may have been the first person to contract the viral infection on 17 November last year and since then cases have started to pile up rapidly.


The first case was
reported in Wuhan

08 Dec 2019
30 Dec 2019


The Chinese Central Government sent a team of experts to Wuhan.

The Crackdown

The Chinese government
arrested eight people for talking about the virus. For them first priority was to crack down on rumors. But the rumors that were being punished were the fact that the virus existed and was a threat to actual people. The same day it was found that several of those infected worked at the city’s Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, which was shut down immediately.

01 Jan 2020
05 Jan 2020


Chinese officials ruled out the risk of a recurrence of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus-a disease that originated in China in 2002-2003 and killed more than 770 people worldwide.

Faceoff with the enemy

According to the WHO, officials confirmed they’ve found a new virus. Named 2019-nCoV, the novel virus was classified as belonging to the coronavirus family, which comprises SARS and common cold.

07 Jan 2020
11 Jan 2020

It starts

The first death was reported in China. A 61-year- who has purchased seafood from Huanan wet market. Treatment did not change his symptoms after he was admitted to hospital, and on the evening of January 11 he died from heart failure.

The fall out

The WHO announced the c se of a woman who had  arrived from Wuhan in Thailand, the first outside of 

13 Jan 2020
14 Jan 2020

The Coverup

Media personnel who
reported on the cases in Wuhan were arrested by police and had their phones and cameras searched for any information regarding the disease

It starts in Japan

The Ministry of Health in Japan reported a confirmed case of a man who also had visited Wuhan.

16 Jan 2020
17th Jan 2020

The US airport screening

U.S. health officials announced that three airports will begin inspecting travelers coming from the city after a second death was confirmed in Wuhan.

More conformations

Authorities in the United States, Nepal, France, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Vietnam and Taiwan confirmed cases over the following days.

18 Jan 2020
18 Jan 2020

The Last Supper

The same day Wuhan government held a 100,000 person banquet where people all ate from the same dishes 3 miles from where the virus was confirmed to have come from this is two days after 49 cases had been made public.

The lies

The Chinese officials stated that the disease wasn’t very infectious and that there’s nothing to worry about.

19 Jan 2020
20 Jan 2020

It’s out there

China confirmed a third death and more than 200 illnesses, with cases reported outside the province of Hubei including in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen. Moreover, a Chinese infectious disease specialist reported human-to-human infection to state broadcaster CCTV, raising concerns of a global epidemic as millions gathered for the holiday of the Lunar New Year.
Asian countries by then had ramped up efforts to prevent the transmission of the virus, requiring mandatory checks to all arrivals from high-risk areas of China at airports.

The denial

The government held a Chinese New Year celebration were multiple performers fell ill but the state media regarded them as having great spirit because they didn’t stop the performance on January.

21 Jan 2020
22 Jan 2020

The day mask a became necessary

The government asked people in Wuhan to wear masks however the rules for mask wearing have just now become an official rule they have to enforce it through fines because the populace has to be coerced to follow the rules due to lack of education.

Chinese death toll soared to 17 of more than 550 infections. Several European airports by then stepped up inspections at Wuhan airlines.

The exhodus

The city was quarantined and no one was allowed to leave however five million people had already left on the same day Wuhan Airport had closed but before this it allowed people to board if they had no symptoms like fever it’s important to know that scientists have been saying that people may be able to spread the disease without showing symptoms yet people were still allowed to board and leave Wuhan.

Later on January 23, the WHO said that the epidemic was not yet a health emergency of international significance, and there was “no evidence” of the virus circulating outside of China among humans.

23 Jan 2020
27 Jan 2020

Who bears the brunt?

The mayor of Wuhan said he would step down now the central government was being lauded as the only government in the world that could have dealt with this. So swiftly the mayor of Wuhan was chastised, hung out to dry and was named the sole responsible figure for this cover-up and the rest of China was allowed to hate him.

More crackdowns

The government continues to arrest people that speak out about the Wuhan coronavirus watching state media and China pick and choose what information is allowed to trickle out to the rest of the world.

27 Jan 2020
30 Jan 2020

Global Heath Emergency

As the death toll in China soared to 170, the WHO declared coronavirus a global emergency, with 7,711 cases recorded in the country where the virus had spread to all 31 provinces.

India and the Philippines reported their first cases of the virus, with each country reporting one affected patient.

Going Global

In China, the number of confirmed cases soared to 9,809. Russia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom confirmed their initial virus outbreaks.

31 Jan 2020
01 Feb 2020

More conformations

China’s death toll increased to 259, with 11,791 reported nationwide infections, according to new estimates issued by the Chinese health authorities.

New cases were registered in Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Singapore, the US, Vietnam and the UAE.

The first

The Philippines confirmed the first death outside of China, of a Chinese man from Wuhan.

02 Feb 2020
04 Feb 2020

Bad news for Belgium

China said the death toll rose to 425 people, and the number of people sick in the mainland stood at 20,438. Hong Kong also announced one death which brought 427 global deaths.

In Belgium the first case was confirmed in a individual repatriated from Wuhan.

“No cure”

More flights evacuating US people returned from Wuhan and the WHO reaffirmed that the coronavirus has “no known successful cure.”

05 Feb 2020
06 Feb 2020

More confirmed cases

The death toll increased to at least 563 in mainland China, with more than 28,000 cases confirmed.

Meanwhile, Malaysian officials confirmed the first recorded human-to-human infection in the world and the number of people infected in Europe had by then reached 30.

He dies

Li Wenliang, a doctor who was among the first to sound the alarm over the coronavirus, died

07 Feb 2020
11 Feb 2020


The WHO announced that “COVID-19” would be named the latest coronavirus.

Ban on foreign travel in North Korea

The official Korean Central News Agency said that North Korea placed a month-long ban on all foreign travelers and those under suspesion of having COVID-19.

13 Feb 2020
14 Feb 2020

It reaches Africa

Egypt became the first country to register the first case in Africa and France confirmed the first death from the virus in Europe.


Meanwhile, Chinese President Xi Jinping’s 3 February address, released by state media, suggested that the government knew of the virus ‘threat long before the public alarm went off.

15 Feb 2020
19 Feb 2020

Iran joins in

Iran reported two deaths from the coronavirus, hours after confirming its first cases.

An eventful day

South Korea announced its second death and 100 new confirmed coronavirus cases, taking the number to 204 cases. In mainland China, the death toll was 2,236 as reported cases of infection rose by more than 75,400. Israel also registered the first confirmed coronavirus case after a woman returning from a cruise ship tested positive. In Italy, the Lombardy region confirmed the first local transmission of the virus, with three new cases carrying a total of six infections to the area.

21 Feb 2020
24 Feb 2020

Middle East

Kuwait, Bahrain, Iraq, Afghanistan and Oman all reported their first cases of the virus. Meanwhile, the number of cases in South Korea ballooned to 833 cases with seven deaths.

Global Situation

The global death toll neared 2,800 with a total of about 80,000 confirmed infection cases reported globally.

Norway, Romania, Greece, Georgia, Pakistan, North Macedonia and Brazil all detected their first cases of the coronavirus.

26 Feb 2020
27 Feb 2020

The United states

The US, the administration is considering invoking the Defense Production Act which would grant President Donald Trump the power to expand industrial production of key materials or products for national security. 

Global Death Toll

 The coronavirus had killed nearly 3,500 people and infected another 102,000 people across more than 90 countries.
Meanwhile in Iran, one of the worst-hit countries with 4,747 reported cases and 124 deaths, recently-elected MP Fatemeh Rahbar died from the coronavirus.

7 Mar 2020
10 Mar 2020

Corona on a rampage

Both Iran and Italy recorded their highest death tolls in a single day. A total of 54 people died in Iran over a 24-hour period, while in Italy, 168 new fatalities were recorded from the coronavirus. 

At Last

WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a Pandemic.

11 Mar 2020
12 Mar 2020

Global Death Toll

The global death toll surpassed 4,600 with infections exceeding 126,100 cases. China reported 15 new cases, its lowest number since the daily reporting on infections began seven weeks ago. 

Italy Horror

Italy overtook China as the country with the most coronavirus-related deaths, registering 3,405 dead compared to 3,245 in China.

19 Mar 2020
20 Mar 2020

The Contrast

coronavirus-related deaths surged past 10,000 globally. The number of cases in Germany rose by 2,958 overnight to 13,957. Spain, meanwhile, said the death toll due to COVID-19 had risen to 1,002.

In China, however, no new domestic cases were reported for a second consecutive day even as concerns remained about infected people flying into the country and importing a second wave of the disease.

EU to the rescue

Europe remains the epicenter of coronavirus, with Italy recording 793 new deaths, the highest daily rise, taking the total number of deaths to 4,825 in 53,578 cases.
Spain is the second worst-hit country in Europe with over 21,000 cases and at least 1,000 deaths.
In order to aid each European country to curb the pandemic, the EU has taken an extraordinary measure to abolish the rules on budget deficits, allowing countries free rein to spend on the economy if required.
Meanwhile, the first two deaths have been registered in Singapore.

21 Mar 2020
22 Mar 2020

Time to lockdown

The global death toll jumped by more than 13,000 as the outbreak rate reached 311,000.
Governments around the world continued to lock their nations, with the new lockdown coming into effect in India.
The occupied Palestinian territory of Gaza reported the first two coronavirus cases.

The US chapter

In the US, the number of cases surged past 35,000, with a death toll of 495, according to John Hopkins University data.

23 Mar 2020
25 Mar 2020

Global lockdown

The White House and the Senate leaders of both parties have reached an agreement on a massive $2 trillion measure to help workers, businesses and the healthcare system which is strained by the rapidly spreading coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, India’s 1.3 billion people joined the global lockdown, and Spain had already recorded more than 700 deaths over the previous 24 hours, surpassing China’s overall death toll, making it now second only to Italy.

Global infections

The total number of coronavirus cases globally surpassed 500,000. 

26 Mar 2020
27 Mar 2020

Nobody is spared

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced he had tested positive for the coronavirus.

Global infections surge

 The number of cases worldwide surpassed 600,000, with more than 27,000 deaths. 

28 Mar 2020
29 March 2020

The New Hotspot

The US accounted for the largest number of coronavirus infections in the world, with more than 124,000 cases reported. The death toll in the world was more than 2,000, more than twice the number two days earlier.

France had weird issues

US President Donald Trump expanded the federal guidance on social distancing until April 30, when a top health official warned that between 100,000 and 200,000 people could die from coronavirus in the US.
Meanwhile, France announced that it would pay for hotel rooms for victims of domestic violence and open pop-up therapy centers after reports show that the number of cases of harassment had increased during the first week of the lock-up.

30 March 2020
31 Mar 2020

US bears the brunt

The number of coronavirus deaths in the US exceeded those recorded by China, where the pandemic started in December, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University.

More than 3,600 deaths from the virus in the US have been reported by the Baltimore University, more than 3,309 deaths in China.

In the hardest-hit countries in Europe, Italy recorded the slowest rise in infections every day for two weeks, while the number of dead has risen by 812. An estimated 800 deaths have been recorded in Spain.

As of now

The United Nations Leader warned that the coronavirus pandemic is threatening the world with the “worst crisis” since the Second World War, with almost 860,000 individuals globally infected with the coronavirus.

The US has confirmed some 800 deaths – taking the number to more than 3,700 – while Spain, the United Kingdom and France have recorded the highest single-day rise in deaths to date.

Meanwhile, China to release reports elaborating the number of asyptomatic instances, the report has not been released publicly.

1 Apr 2020
02 Apr 2020

Russia in focus

Russia’s coronavirus outbreak rose to 3,548, a unprecedented daily rise of 771, according to the Russian Crisis Response Center.

Not looking good

The world has reached two grim milestones when the global number of reported cases of COVID-19 exceeded 1 million and the worldwide death toll of the disease exceeded 50,000.

02 Apr 2020
03 Apr 2020

Middle East Scare

The World Health Organisation (WHO) warned the governments of the Middle East that they need to move rapidly to mitigate coronavirus transmission, as the number of cases in the area has increased to about 60,000-almost twice as much as a week ago.

Banner image credits: A cropped reproduction of digital artist Mikael Barati’s painting depicts an Iranian medial worker fighting a monster representing the COVID-19 pandemic.