Coronavirus cases in Austria surpass 3,000

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VIENNA, March 22 (Xinhua) -- The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus infection in Austria has climbed to 3,123 with nine deaths reported as of Sunday morning, according to local health authorities.

Most cases in the Alpine country are mild, while 105 patients are hospitalized with 15 requiring an intensive care, according to the Health Ministry.

There are currently two main thrusts in the fight against the virus: drastic measures including exit restrictions to contain the outbreak; and the search for medicines and vaccines against it, said Minister of Environment, Innovation and Technology Leonore Gewessler at a press conference on Saturday.

The curve of new infections is beginning to flatten out, and the measures taken by the government to curb the spread are having an effect - with a corresponding time delay, according to an analysis released by researchers at the Complexity Science Hub (CSH) Vienna.

"Now we are seeing a turnaround," according to the analysis published Saturday.

The government has now provided a further fund of 22 million euros (24 million U.S. dollars) for research to fight against the coronavirus, said Gewessler at the press conference.

"School closing and social distancing are only emergency measures," said Minister of Science Heinz Fassmann. "We urgently need this call in research." Enditem

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