BEIJING, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- A senior health official said Friday the new category of clinically diagnosed cases was created to facilitate the early diagnosis and treatment of patients with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Hubei Province, the hardest-hit region of the epidemic.
Clinically diagnosed cases refer to suspected cases with pneumonia-related computerized tomography (CT) scan results, according to the latest version of the diagnosis and treatment scheme released by the National Health Commission (NHC).
The category would include those who had yet to be tested positive in the nucleic acid testing (NAT), which had previously been the threshold for hospitals to accept patients and give treatment.
With the new arrangement, clinically diagnosed patients in the province will get standardized treatment and the recovery rate is also expected to improve, according to Zeng Yixin, deputy director of the NHC.
Zeng told a press conference in Beijing that the new arrangement only applies to Hubei and will not cause misunderstanding in the nationwide prevention and control work.
On the surge of new clinically diagnosed cases reported in Hubei since Wednesday, Zeng said the increase reflected the current situation in the province, stressing that by identifying those cases, it will achieve the goals of early diagnosis, early treatment and early isolation of virus infection cases.
Hubei reported 13,332 and 3,095 new clinically diagnosed cases on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively.