Tourists have their body temperature measured before entering the Hongyadong scenic area in southwest China's Chongqing, May 3, 2020. Measures for COVID-19 prevention and control are still carried out in Chongqing's famous Hongyadong scenic area during the Labor Day holiday. Visitors are required to pre-book their tours and plan their visit ahead of time to avoid overcrowding. (Photo: Xinhua)
A total of 21 Chinese provinces and regions have lowered their public emergency response level for COVID-19 to level three after Shandong and Henan did so on Wednesday.
As of Wednesday, only eight provincial-level regions remained at level two, two have been lowered to level four, and none is at level one, people.cn, website of the People's Daily, reported on Wednesday.
China's contingency plan for urgent public health emergencies categorizes public emergency incidents from level one, the most serious level, to level four, a normal incident, based on the incident's nature, extent of harm and scope.
After COVID-19 broke out, Zhejiang, Guangdong and Hunan were the three provinces to first activate level one emergency response on January 23, a move that was soon followed by other provinces in the days that followed. All Chinese provincial-level regions had entered level one emergency response by January 30, according to people.cn.
As the COVID-19 situation was gradually brought under control, provincial-level regions began to lower the response level in late February and early March. With Hubei, the province hit hardest by the novel coronavirus in China, lowering to level two on Saturday, all 31 Chinese provincial-level regions have suspended their level one response.