Date: 08-Feb-2020

China goes all out to combat coronavirus outbreak

Spring Festival, the most important traditional holiday in China, is normally a time of celebration with families reunion and friends gathering. But this year, the festive season has become rather subdued due to the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) which broke out in China just before the Spring Festival. Cases of pneumonia caused by the virus were first noted in Wuhan, Hubei province in central China in December 2019. According to China's National Health Commission, 17,238 cases and 361 deaths have been confirmed across China as of 9:00, February 3, 2020. The coronavirus outbreak couldn't have come at a worse time. The Spring Festival travel season is the largest annual migration in China. As some 3 billion trips might be made, it's hard to overstate the difficulties of containing the outbreak. China has made tremendous efforts to prevent and control the outbreak. About a week after the large-scale outbreak, Chinese scientists identified the pathogen in record time and shared the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus with the WHO and other countries and regions as quickly as possible. In barely a month, nearly 6,000 medical workers from across the country rushed to Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak, to support aid efforts. All large-scale Spring Festival celebrations were canceled; transport restrictions were adopted in some provinces and cities; the Spring Festival holiday was extended and school openings postponed... With no effective treatment or vaccine yet, China has taken strong measures to curb the spread of the virus by reducing the flow of people. Given the shortage of medical resources and hospital beds, it was decided two emergency hospitals be built in Wuhan. Modeled on Beijing's Xiaotangshan Hospital which was built during the SARS outbreak in 2003 and slated for completion within just over ten days, the hospitals again show the world the astonishing "China speed". This is only one of the many moving moments showing how China is combatting the virus. Through this, we can not only see how China can mobilize its people and resources with its system, but also get a sense of its people's dedication and sense of unity. This also shows the value placed both by the Chinese government and society on the utmost importance of people's lives and interests. Infectious diseases are the common enemy of all mankind. China is going all out to prevent and control the outbreak, and working to ensure regional and global public health security. The World Health Organization has declared the novel coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concern. We believe that the international community can join hands to overcome the difficulties and win the battle against the outbreak.