China on Thursday reported zero new local infection of the novel Coronavirus in the past 24 hours, for the first time since the COVID-19 crisis broke our, a turning point in Beijing’s fight against the outbreak that has killed and sickened more than 81,000 in the country and hammered its economy.
The National Health Commission said it was also the first time Hubei province – where the disease first emerged – recorded no new cases either domestically or from abroad. Nationwide, there were 34 new infections, all of them from overseas.
There were eight more deaths in China — all in Hubei — raising the nationwide total to 3,245, according to the commission. There have been nearly 81,000 infections in China but only 7,263 people remain sick with the COVID-19 disease. The global number has shot past 200,000, with more than 8,700 deaths.
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Officials said on Thursday all the 34 cases reported in China until Wednesday midnight were imported cases – infected people who had returned to the country from abroad.
At least eight persons died of the disease on Wednesday, health officials said, adding that all the deaths were in the worst-hit central Chinese province of Hubei.
Hindustan Times reported, “No new infections of the novel coronavirus were reported on Wednesday in Wuhan. The epicentre of the epidemic, marking a notable first in the city’s months-long battle with the microscopic foe,” the official news agency.
“With no new cases in Wuhan, the Chinese mainland on Wednesday reduced the increase in domestic transmissions to zero. The country now faces a greater threat of infections imported from overseas, which jumped by 34 on Wednesday,” the HT added.
Zhong Nanshan, a leading Chinese epidemiologist, said that without strong intervention the coronavirus would not be eliminated.
“I think many countries should take measures [based on] the intervention mechanism invented by China. Upstream control is an ancient way but effective,” Zhong said in a press conference on Wednesday.
“The core points are the ‘four early’: early prevention, early detection, early diagnosis, and early quarantine.”
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