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Caixin

In Depth: How Wuhan lost the fight to contain the coronavirus

Radiologist: 'I've never seen a virus grow so quickly; the speed is stunning'

Medical staff use a stretcher to move a patient in front of the Wuhan No. 7 Hospital on Feb. 2. (Photo by Ding Gang/ Caixin)

WUHAN, China (Caixin) -- Zhang Qi was planning to spend a week of leisure in Wuhan when he arrived Jan. 21. It looked like any other day in the historic, prosperous central China metropolis of 11 million people.

That sense evaporated in the evening as Zhang watched renowned epidemiologist Zhong Nanshan issue a sobering warning in a TV interview. A new form of viral pneumonia was showing signs of spreading among people in the city and had already sickened a number of medical workers, Zhong said.

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