SCIO briefing on efforts of the Central Guidance Team in Hubei to organize and guide epidemic control

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on Thursday afternoon in Wuhan, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak, to introduce the efforts being undertaken by the Central Guidance Team in Hubei to organize and guide the work related to epidemic prevention and control. February 21, 2020

People's Daily:

At present, except for Hubei, the number of newly diagnosed cases in other provinces is declining every day. Nonetheless, the current number of newly diagnosed cases in Wuhan and Hubei province is still very high. How do you see this? How should we view the epidemic situation in Hubei and Wuhan at this stage? Thank you.

Ding Xiangyang:

Under the overall arrangement of General Secretary Xi Jinping and the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, the number of newly diagnosed cases in provinces other than Hubei has fallen for 16 consecutive days, which has increased confidence in the prevention and control of the epidemic in Wuhan and Hubei province.

There have also been some positive changes in the epidemic situation in both Wuhan and Hubei province. The epidemic prevention and control efforts have yielded positive results. Daily new confirmed and suspected cases have both dropped in Wuhan, down from over 4,000 people in mid-February to between 1,000 and 2,000 people. The number of suspected cases has also dropped from a peak of more than 18,000 in early February to about 2,000 now. In addition, our medical capabilities have also improved, and the number of discharged patients is rising steadily, reaching over 500 yesterday. Meanwhile, other cities in Hubei have also seen their number of confirmed and suspected infections decrease, dropping to double-digit or even single-digit growth. In general, the outbreaks in Wuhan and Hubei province have slowed compared with the previous explosive growth. As long as the prevention and control measures are in place, this downward trend will not change, and the number will gradually decline from the highest point in the previous period.

However, it is also necessary to understand that despite the positive results, challenges remain, including the large number of infections in Wuhan and Hubei province. In terms of medical treatment alone, the number of confirmed patients is large. There are over 30,000 patients currently being treated in Wuhan, including several thousand patients in severe or critical conditions. We are still facing great challenges in terms of medical treatment. The top priority at present is preventing mild cases from developing into severe or critical ones. The prevention and control measures must be deployed at the source. There is also great pressure on the provision of necessary resources. 

We must clench our teeth and fight the novel coronavirus with greater confidence, stronger determination and more resolute measures. Under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, the Central Guidance Team will stick to our post and work to alleviate the hardships faced by Wuhan's residents as well as the whole country. We will not stop until we win the battle against the virus.

Xi Yanchun:

The State Council Information Office will also continue to hold press conferences in Wuhan, Hubei province. Thank you for your attention. Thank you also to our speakers and to all of you. Here we conclude today's conference.

Translated and edited by Zhang Liying, Wang Yanfang, Zhu Bochen, Mi Xingang, Li Xiao, Wu Jin, Zhang Rui, Gong Yingchun, Gao Zhan, Lin Liyao, Zhou Jing, Zhang Jiaqi, Li Huiru, Wang Qian, Huang Shan, Fan Junmei, Wang Wei, Guo Xiaohong, Li Xiao, He Shan, Zhang Junmian, Geoffrey Murray, Jay Birbeck, David Ball. In case of any dispute over a discrepancy, the Chinese version is deemed to prevail.

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