Chinese authorities said Tuesday that the outbreak ofcentered in the city of Wuhan has now claimed the lives of six people. The mayor of Wuhan told China's state broadcaster CCTV that there had been a total of 258 confirmed cases of the illness in his city, including 227 people who were still receiving treatment.
Travelers and residents were stepping up precautions after officials confirmed on Monday that the pneumonia-like. That has heightened fears that the epidemic could spread much more quickly, and much further.
CBS News correspondent Ramy Incocencio said officials in Wuhan have designated nine hospitals as treatment centers — that's on top of 61 fever clinics and a team of medical experts dedicated full-time to combating the outbreak.
One bit of good news came as Chinese scientists said they had determined the DNA sequence of the new coronavirus. That could help in the development of treatments, and potentially a vaccine, as the virus threatens to spread even more rapidly.
The specter of a larger outbreak looms as hundreds of millions of Chinese make their way across the country, and travel back to it from abroad, to ring in the lunar new year.