SCIO briefing on epidemic control and medical rescue in Hubei

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on Saturday morning in Wuhan, epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak, to introduce an updated picture of epidemic control and medical rescue in Hubei province. February 16, 2020


According to the official data released, the proportion of severe cases is higher in Hubei province, especially in Wuhan, than in other places. What therefore is the plan for conducting medical treatment, especially for severe cases, and what is the design of hospital layout? Thank you.

Wang Hesheng:

Thank you for your question. The situation that you mentioned is true: the proportion of severe cases is higher in Wuhan than in other places. This issue has also concerned the General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee and the Premier. They have repeatedly paid attention to the situation, given instructions and offered guidance. They raised the requirements on medical treatment for severe cases, calling for the conducting of careful research into the situation and for it to be tackled with sound solutions. Vice Premier Sun Chunlan, who heads the special work group sent by the central government, convened meetings of experts from various fields to analyze and evaluate the situation, to summarize the lessons learned for conducting medical treatment, and to optimize the plan for diagnosis and treatment. These meetings brought together treatment experiences from across the country and have continuously perfected the guide for diagnosis and treatment.

The fifth edition of the diagnosis and treatment plan has been released, aiming to increase the admission and cure rate, and decrease the infection rate and the number of fatalities, which is at the top of our agenda. The "four concentration" principle we adhere to means concentrating patients, concentrating experts, concentrating resources and concentrating treatment efforts. We will try our best to mobilize as many resources as we can to minimize deaths. Next, let's give the floor to Jiao Yahui to introduce the detailed measures and methods.

Jiao Yahui:

I will explain more about measures we take when treating patients in a severe condition. First, we stick to the principle that patients are classified and given concentrated treatment, quality resources are pooled and experts are called together for the virus fight. Besides three key designated hospitals – Jinyintan, Pulmonary and Zhongnan hospitals, we have further increased the number of designated hospitals for severe cases. Key Hospitals under National Health Commission (NHC) and Hubei provincial hospitals in Wuhan including Sino-French New City Branch and Guanggu Branch of Tongji Hospital, the west campus of Wuhan Union Hospital, Hubei Cancer Hospital and the eastern branch of Hubei People's Hospital were also designated to offer concentrated treatment for cases in severe condition. At present, these hospitals have 5,000 beds available.

Second, high-level medical teams from hospitals under the NHC and various provinces are called to help in the key designated hospitals in the epicenter of the epidemic. They take over the whole ward systemically. Among these medical teams some are led by academicians, as Mr. He introduced, including Zhong Nanshan, Li Lanjuan, Wang Chen and Qiao Jie with Peking University Third Hospital. They are on the front line to guide the efforts of treating severe cases and their teams take over the whole ward for severe patients systemically. In addition, experts of respiration, infection and intensive care medicine all play important role in these teams.

Third, besides medical instruments in Hubei province, we also called for these medical teams to bring their existing instruments from their own hospitals to designated hospitals for severe cases in Wuhan including breathing machines, monitors, and ECMO, which are put into use immediately and play an important role in the treatment process. At the same time, we have organized national, provincial and municipal-level teams of experts to form a grid mode of management in designated hospitals for non-severe cases. These experts guide the treatment on a circuit, evaluate hospitalized patients, detect cases in severe condition and transfer them to the designated hospitals for advanced treatment, which helps to achieve concentrated management and good treatment.

Xi Yanchun:

Today, the State Council Information Office holds this press conference in Wuhan, Hubei province. We want to brief in a timely, accurate and comprehensive way on the virus fight together with hundreds of journalists on the front lines. Following is the press conference by the Information Office of Hubei provincial government. The time of press conference will be adjusted to 4 pm from tomorrow, and we welcome your careful attention.

The prevention and control of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is currently at its most crucial stage. We will make a concerted effort to combat the virus and never been crushed by any difficulty and danger. We believe that under the firm leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, all Chinese people work hard together and will resolutely win the war against the pneumonia epidemic.

Today's speakers are all comrades braving on the front lines of virus fight. They work very hard, and thanks again to our speakers and thanks to everybody. The press conference is hereby concluded.

Translated and edited by Zhang Liying, Wang Yiming, Huang Shan, Li Huiru, Cui Can, Zhang Junmian, Yang Xi, Zhang Rui, Gao Zhan, He Shan, Wang Yanfang, Zhou Jing, Wang Wei, Fan Junmei, Guo Xiaohong, Liu Sitong, Jay Birbeck, David Ball. In case of any dispute over a discrepancy, the Chinese version is deemed to prevail.

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