By Ji Yuqiao and Li Qiao
Chinese authorities and experts agree there’s a visible improvement in the country’s COVID-19 outbreak situation, with some places in the country ceasing to issue a daily report of infections after seeing zero new cases in several days and a top epidemiologist saying that the epicenter Wuhan is coming out of its darkest moment of the virus outbreak.
Many regions in China, including nine provinces, have not reported any new confirmed cases of COVID-19 for several consecutive days, and even in Wuhan, the epidemic epicenter, the situation is getting better.
“Wuhan is coming out of its darkest moment,” Zeng Guang, chief epidemiologist of the Chinese Center for Disease and Control said Saturday.
The Chinese authorities are gradually easing the control and prevention measures nationwide, including some places of Hubei Province.
The authorities in Jingzhou of Hubei announced that all traffic restrictions in rural areas of the city would be lifted effective 10 am Saturday, local media reported Friday.
Four cities in Central China’s Henan and two cities in East China’s Anhui said they will cease to announce the daily report on the epidemic situation if there is no confirmed new case. This announcement came after the aforementioned places reported zero new cases for several consecutive days.
Businesses across China are also reviving. More than 95 percent of Shanghai’s 277 shopping malls and 80 departmental stores have resumed operation as the COVID-19 epidemic situation in the city has improved, Shanghai-based the Paper reported.
“The rapid rise of the epidemic has been curbed,” the central government supervision group announced at a press conference on Friday.
With the improvement of the epidemic situation in Wuhan and Hubei, prevention and control measures will be adjusted in time in line with related rules and regulations, Ding Xiangyang, member of the supervision group, said at the press conference.
“Winter is over and spring is here. The day that everyone is expecting is not too far away,” Ding said.
However, Ding also cautioned against losing grip on the awareness, adding that following all the precautionary measures is crucial.
Zhou Zijun, a public health expert at Peking University, believes China can maintain its current steadily improving tendency of the outbreak prevention.
He noted people returning to work wouldn’t pose high risks of epidemic spread as all Chinese people and enterprises already have a strong awareness of COVID-19 prevention and control, noting it is still important to limit trips to crowded places and avoid parties.
While the domestic situation is improving, the outbreak globally is looking grim. China has to pay more attention to preventing and controlling imported cases from abroad, Zhou told the Global Times.
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