Beijing officials declared, on June 24th, that the latest local coronavirus outbreak in the city which has infected 256 people, is “under control.”
The city authorities had concluded that ground-zero of the local outbreak was the largest wholesale food market in downtown Beijing.
The first community case was announced on June 11th, which led to a partial lockdown of the city.
Initially, authorities in China’s capital blamed imported Norweigian salmon for the outbreak, which was later proved as untrue.
At a presser, the Beijing Municipal Government Spokesperson, Xu Heijan, said:
“The Beijing epidemic directly linked to Xinfadi (market) is basically under control, but at the same time, we have discovered household and workplace cluster infections and cases of community transmission. The prevention and control situation remains complicated; we cannot lower our guard in the slightest.”
Beijing officials found that the 253 out of 256 covid-19 cases were linked to Xinfadi.
The remaining three positives of the virus are still undergoing contact tracing to determine where they contracted the virus.
According to the city officials, they deemed the situation as “under control” as the rate of the local infection is slowing down since the start of this week.
The head of Beijing’s Health Commission, Lei Haichao, stated:
“This sends a very positive signal and proves that the prevention and control measures taken lately and the lockdown of residential compounds are effective. The combination of fever clinics, discovering (cases) from close contacts, and mass nucleic acid testing has played an important role in early detection.”
Many of the recorded cases came from low-income migrant workers at Xinfadi and nearby establishments. Since then, the residential compounds in the vicinity have been subjected to a lockdown.
Beijing has also tested en masse the residents of medium and high-risk neighborhoods to ascertain the severity of the local outbreak.
The leading respiratory expert who led China’s response to the SARS pandemic, Zhong Nanshan, warned:
“There may be an increase in cases in the winter or next spring, but I don’t think the outbreak will be as big as the first wave of the pandemic.”
Experts, including a prominent Thai doctor, warned at the possibility of smaller, and recurrent outbreaks in the near future.
Source: The Star