Chinese doctor Li Wenliang, infected with the novel coronavirus, has died at Wuhan Central Hospital, according to a message posted on the hospital's official account on Weibo.com.
"Ophthalmologist Li Wenliang of our hospital, who was unfortunately infected while combating the pneumonia epidemic of the new coronavirus infection, died at 2:58 on 7 February 2020 [local time], despite all [our] efforts. We deeply regret and mourn this", the statement said.
Earlier media reports said Dr Li, 34, was in critical condition and striving to survive the disease.
On hearing the news about the doctor being infected, tens of thousands of people turned to social media to express hopes for his recovery.
The novel coronavirus originated in Hubei province last December, with at least 560 fatalities and over 28,000 people infected in China so far. Outside China, one lethal case was registered in the Philippines.