OPINIONS Observer: Containing of Qingdao’s recent coronavirus outbreak a demonstration of unity


Observer: Containing of Qingdao’s recent coronavirus outbreak a demonstration of unity

By Qiao Wai | People's Daily app

22:39, October 16, 2020

File photo

The source of the recent COVID-19 outbreak in Qingdao, East China's Shandong Province was confirmed Friday to be the result of nosocomial cross-infections, and no community transmission has occurred. 

The city reported three asymptomatic cases on Sunday. Of the three asymptomatic cases, two cases tested positive for the coronavirus when they went to the hospital as normal patients, and one person was found during a screening for close contacts of confirmed cases.

As domestic and global observers keep a close eye on the city, Qingdao, with incredible speed, managed to contain the epidemic in less than a week.

Qingdao registered no new coronavirus cases on Friday and as of the same day, the total cases of this flare-up stood at only 13.

The epidemic broke out in Qingdao, and it is totally reasonable for Chinese people to gasp that the coastal city is famous for its beaches, exotic buildings, seafood cuisines and busy harbors.

Qingdao received over 4.47 million passenger trips during the National Day holidays in early October. If the outbreak were not well contained, the virus would hitchhike and spread to the whole country. 

However, Chinese people did not panic. Instead of holding it in contempt, Chinese people have gained full confidence in the Communist Party of China (CPC), the local and central governments, to cope with the outbreak.

Since the epidemic broke out last winter in Wuhan, China has put out epidemic sparks in the country time and time again. Heilongjiang Province, Beijing, Jilin Province, Xinjiang Autonomous Region--China overcame one re-emergence after another in the war against the virus. It has been proven repeatedly that China’s principle of people’s lives always stand first. Preventing a domestic epidemic from rebounding, and preventing imported cases are the correct and practical ones in the prevention and control of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Simultaneously, Chinese people have a clearer understanding that only by being obedient to the epidemic prevention and control rules, and taking up personal protection measures are the effective methods to protect themselves, the people around them and the safety of the whole nation.

As soon the outbreak in Qingdao was reported, local authorities for epidemic prevention and control implemented emergency plans and conducted epidemiological investigations. 

The quarantine for close contacts and general contacts were initiated immediately, which was followed by nucleic acid tests. The local health authorities closed off the key areas which could be contaminated. 

After the primary response, the National Health Commission also dispatched an expert team to Qingdao to guide virus prevention and control on Monday. A jaw-dropping large-scale city-wide nucleic test for the city’s more than 11 million citizens was activated on Monday. As of Friday morning, a total of 10.87 million samples have been taken, apart from the 12 confirmed cases reported previously, with no new positive cases found.

The Qingdao people have shown an extraordinary degree of cooperation and unity in the city-wide test, that many heart-warming moments were captured. A young boy bowed to the medical staff squatting to take his sample. Another girl left gifts she made for the medical staff, and wrote a letter saying she hopes for their safety. An old man, who collects garbage for a living, laid down his bag of garbage and asked the medical staff whether he would be charged for the test. A member of the medical staff said that the test was free, and all the old man needed to do was to wait in line. 

China’s response to Qingdao’s outbreak has demonstrated the country has become more and more experienced when facing domestic epidemics. Detecting and preventing wide transmissions of the coronavirus in the early stage is the new norm of China’s prevention and control on the pandemic.

A “war” is often used by Chinese people as a metaphor to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, and a war requires all soldiers to focus on one single goal--winning. From the Central Committee of the CPC, to the central government, to Qingdao’s local authorities and citizens, the unity can be seen everywhere to win the war against the coronavirus. That is the reason why China’s job in containing the epidemic received global praise. 

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