BEIJING: A Wuhan doctor who worked with coronavirus whistleblower Li Wenliang died of the virus on Tuesday, state media reported, becoming China's first COVID-19 fatality in weeks.

Hu Weifeng, a urologist at Wuhan Central Hospital, passed away after being treated for COVID-19 and allied issues for more than four months, state broadcaster CCTV said. He is the sixth doctor from Wuhan Central Hospital to have died from the virus, which emerged in the central Chinese city late last year.

Cases have dwindled dramatically from the peak in mid-February as the country appears to have brought the outbreak largely under control.

The official death toll in the country of 1.4 billion people stands at 4,634 – well below the number of fatalities in less populous nations. Wuhan Central Hospital has yet to give a formal statement on Hu's death. In early February it said some 68 staff members had contracted coronavirus.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2020