Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrived in Wuhan on Monday and is touring hospitals, according to state media.
Li is head of a central government working group set up to tackle the outbreak.
Last week he called on local departments to “go all out” to prevent and control the spread of the disease.
His visit to Wuhan, ground zero for the outbreak, comes as Chinese authorities announced they would extend the week-long Lunar New Year holiday, which was supposed to run through January 30, to now run until February 2, according to state news agency Xinhua.
On Sunday, Chinese President Xi Jinping chaired a meeting with top officials of the ruling Communist Party on the prevention and control of the Wuhan coronavirus.
During the meeting, Xi said that in facing the grave situation of the rapid spreading epidemic of the deadly new coronavirus, it was necessary to strengthen the centralized leadership of the Party Central Committee. He also demanded that the government at all levels to put people’s life and health as the top priority.
"Life is of paramount importance. When an epidemic breaks out, a command is issued. It is our responsibility to prevent and control it," Xi said.
Xi ordered officials in Hubei province to take more rigorous measures to prevent the virus from spreading and to put all patients in centralized quarantine for treatment.