Coronavirus: they have identified in China the “patient zero” of the pandemic

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The woman, who traded shrimp at the Wuham seafood market, felt the first symptoms on December 10, went to a clinic, and then continued working (pictured, the market closed) Source: AFP – Credit: Hector Retamal

A 57-year-old shrimp vendor from the seafood market in


would be the first person to acquire the


, the disease that later became


and it spread to the world, causing, so far, some 721,000 infected and more than 34,000 dead.

It all started on December 10, 2019, when a woman, who was identified by

The Wall Street Journal


Wei Guixian


began to feel bad. Assuming she had a cold, she went to a clinic for treatment. But then he went back to work.

Noticing that his condition was not improving, he went to the Eleventh Hospital in his city, where they could not diagnose what was happening to him and prescribed pills. Finally, on December 16, he went to Wuhan Union Hospital, one of the largest clinics in the city, to seek a second opinion.

Until then, she was completely unaware that these symptoms made her the first patient – or one of the first – to have contracted the virus.


, which would later become known around the world as



The doctor at the last hospital where he was seen informed Guixian that she was not the first vendor in that market to exhibit these symptoms. It was a disease then unknown, but already described as “ruthless”.

The woman assumes that she contracted the virus by sharing the bathroom with other vendors in the same market
The woman assumes that she contracted the virus by sharing the bathroom with other vendors in the same market Source: AFP – Credit: Hector Retamal

The first cases, from the same market

At the end of December, Guixian

She was quarantined, and doctors later formally established a link between the appearance of the coronavirus and the seafood market in Wuhan City, where she worked.

Guixian was released from the hospital in January this year. She believes she was infected in one of the bathrooms in the market, shared with other merchants, a link she established when she found out that several residents of the market were also infected.

“I felt a little tired, but not as tired as in years past. Every winter I get the flu. So I thought it was the flu,” Guixian said after it all went down to the Chinese outlet The Paper.

But it was definitely not a common flu.

The Wuhan Municipal Health Commission confirmed that Wei was one of the first 27 people to test positive for coronavirus, revealing that it was one of 24 registered cases with direct links to the market.

Since the start of the pandemic, almost 82,000 people have been infected in China and nearly 3,000 have died.




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