Backgrounder: Nationwide aid to Hubei's battle against coronavirus

Source: Xinhua| 2020-03-17 20:06:00|Editor: huaxia

BEIJING, March 17 (Xinhua) -- China has mobilized its medical resources nationwide to aid central China's Hubei Province in the battle against the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), demonstrating the great strength of the Chinese system and proven effective as the spread of the virus has been basically contained.

The hardest-hit Hubei Province reported only one new confirmed case of the novel coronavirus disease on Monday, bringing the total confirmed COVID-19 cases in the province to 67,799.

As of Monday, Hubei had seen no newly confirmed COVID-19 cases for 12 consecutive days in its 16 cities and prefectures outside Wuhan.

Soon after the virus outbreak, medical staff from around the country were dispatched to aid Wuhan, working together to help the epicenter of the epidemic tide over the difficulties.

Shanghai sent its first batch of 136 medical workers to Wuhan on Jan. 24, the eve of the Chinese Lunar New Year, and sent another 50 medical workers to the city on Jan. 27.

A team of 136 medical workers from 12 hospitals run by the Beijing municipal health commission flew to Wuhan on Jan. 27, to join the fight against the virus. The southeastern province of Fujian also sent a team of 135 doctors and nurses to Wuhan on the same day.

To help other cities in Hubei, which faced challenges but with limited medical resources, China released a "pairing-up support" plan, mobilizing the other provincial-level regions to pair up with all 15 cities and Shennongjia forest district (with Wuhan excluded) across Hubei. Besides a massive influx of medical staff and equipment, supplies have poured in as well.

The province has seen 107 medical teams from 29 provinces, municipalities, and autonomous regions, as well as the People's Liberation Army, Yang Yunyan, vice governor of Hubei told a press conference on Feb. 6.

A total of 217 medical teams with 25,633 medical workers had been sent to Hubei to help combat the COVID-19 as of Feb. 14.

The World Health Organization concluded in a report issued on Feb. 28 that China's experience strongly supports the efficacy and effectiveness of anchoring COVID-19 readiness and rapid response plans in a thorough assessment of local risks and of utilizing a differentiated risk-based containment strategy.

China's rather unique and unprecedented public health response reversed the escalating cases in Hubei and beyond, said the report.

As of March 8, China had sent 346 medical teams with 42,600 medical staff to Hubei, including 19,000 intensive care medical staff and medical personnel specializing in respiratory, infectious and psychological illnesses, among other fields.

Zero infection has been reported among the medical staff aiding Hubei, Ding Xiangyang, deputy secretary-general of the State Council, told a press conference on March 6.

Along with more than 80,000 local medical staff fighting the virus in Hubei, including over 30,000 in Wuhan, these medical workers had cured 55,987 COVID-19 patients in the province as of Monday.

Among the medical workers from across the country who have joined the treatment of patients in Hubei, about 12,000 are born between 1990 and 1999 (post-90s) or even post-00s, according to Ding.

They have become the backbone, pride and hope of the whole country in combating the virus, Ding said.

About two-thirds of the total medics sent to the province are female, said Guo Yanhong, an official with the National Health Commission, at a press conference on March 8.

The first batch of medical assistance teams started leaving Hubei early Tuesday as the epidemic outbreak in the hard-hit province has been subdued.

The 3,675 medical staffers belonging to 41 medical teams from across China have assisted 14 temporary hospitals and seven designated hospitals in Wuhan.