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Timeline of China's fight against the novel coronavirus

Updated: 2020-03-20



BEIJING — In a nationwide mobilization to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), China has taken effective measures to achieve remarkable results. Here is a flashback of China's actions:

March 19:

— Chinese mainland reported zero increase in domestically transmitted COVID-19 cases for March 18. Wuhan, which was once worst hit by the coronavirus outbreak, reported no newly confirmed cases for the same day.

March 17:

— The first batch of medical assistance teams started leaving Hubei province as the epidemic outbreak in the hard-hit province has been subdued. Over 42,000 medical workers from across the country were dispatched to aid Hubei in fighting the epidemic since the virus outbreak.

— Experts in a Wuhan hospital held a video conference with their peers in 14 hospitals in the Netherlands, sharing experience of COVID-19 prevention and treatment.

March 16:

— Chinese companies have mobilized to aid the anti-coronavirus battle in numerous countries including Italy, the Republic of Korea, Laos, Pakistan and Iran by donating medical supplies.

March 12:

— Eight newly confirmed cases were reported on the Chinese mainland, the first time for the figure to drop to a single digit.

March 10:

— President Xi Jinping inspected Wuhan, pledging a continuous fight toward victory as prevention and control efforts have "turned the tide".

— Wuhan closed all of its 16 public facility-turned temporary hospitals amid a continuous drop of patients in the city.

— Over 74 million members of the Communist Party of China (CPC) voluntarily made donations totaling 7.68 billion yuan (about $1.1 billion) for the COVID-19 prevention and control.

March 9:

— Most of the more than 50,000 COVID-19 patients in China who have recovered and been discharged from hospital received traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) treatment. TCM has been involved in the treatment of 74,603 confirmed COVID-19 cases nationwide, accounting for 92.5 percent of the total.

— China pledged $20 million donation to the World Health Organization (WHO) to support the global fight, and the construction of public health systems in developing countries.

March 8:

— China has sent 415 psychological counselors to Central China's Hubei province, the epicenter of the epidemic in China, to offer mental counseling services to patients and medical workers.

March 7:

— A rapid testing kit for the COVID-19 antibody with results available in 29 minutes was approved by the National Medical Products Administration.

— Wuhan has renovated and built 48 designated hospitals and 16 temporary hospitals, with more than 60,000 beds. No one has contracted the virus among over 40,000 medical workers who were sent to aid Hubei from across China.

March 6:

— The number of newly COVID-19 cases in China dropped to double digits for the first time since Jan 20.

— China has continued to optimize the utilization of drugs and therapies in the treatment of the disease to block the conversion of mild cases to severe cases and save critically ill patients.

March 5:

— The daily count of newly cured and discharged cases in Hubei exceeded the number of newly confirmed cases for 15 consecutive days since Feb 19.

— A team of Chinese doctors successfully 3D-printed the model of the nidus of a patient infected with the coronavirus.

— The People's Bank of China said that more than 7 million payment transactions related to the prevention and control of the epidemic had been handled through its payment and clearing system, involving an aggregate amount of 6 trillion yuan as of March 2.

— Chinese doctors proved for the first time that the novel coronavirus can cause damage to patients' central nervous system.

March 4:

— Chinese health authority unveiled the latest version of the national diagnosis and treatment plan for COVID-19 which includes the results of autopsies of two victims and pathological observation based on needle biopsies.

— China has added the antibody diagnosis method for COVID-19 and its relevant criteria in the country's latest diagnosis and treatment scheme, which also includes warning against transmission via aerosol or contact due to environmental pollution caused by the excrement and urine of patients.

March 2:

— China's daily output of face masks reached 116 million, 12 times the figure on Feb 1, as production expansion moved into top gear.

March 1:

— Wuhan closed a gymnasium-turned temporary hospital, for the first time in the city, as the number of patients dropped.

— Chinese doctors completed a double-lung transplant surgery on a COVID-19 patient.

Feb 29:

— Chinese pathologists concluded autopsies on 11 patients who died from the disease, which have shown various degrees of pulmonary mutations.

— The WHO-China Joint Mission released a report about its recent nine-day field study trip on COVID-19 in Beijing and provinces of Guangdong, Sichuan, and Hubei, saying China provides vital lessons of COVID-19 containment for a global response.

Feb 27:

— President Xi held talks with Mongolian President Khaltmaa Battulga at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The Mongolian president said it will send additional 30,000 sheep apart from the previous donations.

Feb 26:

— President Xi chaired a leadership meeting on COVID-19 control and made donation.

Feb 24:

— China's top legislature adopted a decision on thoroughly banning the illegal trading of wildlife and eliminating the consumption of wild animals to safeguard people's lives and health.

Feb 21:

— President Xi chaired a leadership meeting on the prevention and control of the novel coronavirus disease and the coordination between the epidemic control and economic and social development.

Feb 19:

— President Xi called for great attention to the protection and care for medical workers to make sure they are healthy and stay focused on winning the battle against the outbreak.

— China's daily number of newly recovered novel coronavirus patients surpassed that of newly confirmed infections for the first time.

Feb 14:

— A gymnasium-converted makeshift hospital was put into use in Wuhan. It is the first makeshift hospital fully supported by doctors and medical workers of traditional Chinese medicine.

Feb 13:

— Hubei province reported 14,840 new confirmed cases and 242 new deaths, the highest daily increases, after the diagnosis criteria for confirmed COVID-19 cases were further loosened for timely treatment of more patients.

— The city of Huanggang, hard hit by COVID-19 in Hubei, put all residential communities and areas on lockdown as the city upgraded virus prevention and control measures.

— Two separate research groups led by China's top scientists said they had isolated novel coronavirus strains from samples of infected patient's feces.

Feb 11:

— The Standing Committee of the Provincial People's Congress of Hubei decided to appoint Wang Hesheng as the new director of the provincial health commission. Wang would replace Liu Yingzi, the former head of the provincial health commission.

Feb 10:

— "Pairing-up support for Hubei!" China stepped up its fight against the novel coronavirus as it released a plan for over half of provincial-level regions to aid cities in Hubei.

Feb 8:

— The newly-built Leishenshan Hospital in Wuhan received the first batch of patients infected with the virus.

Feb 7:

— Wuhan combed communities to ensure every confirmed or suspected patient was located and attended to. A senior official vowed to nail any official deserter "to history's pillar of shame".

— The Wuhan municipal government mourned Li Wenliang, a doctor who died of the coronavirus. He was infected while working at a local hospital.

Feb 5:

— The temporary hospital of Jianghan, which was converted from the existing international exhibition center of Wuhan, started to take in virus-infected patients, providing over 1,500 beds.

Feb 4:

— Wuhan has set up 132 quarantine sites to cope with the surging number of patients confirmed or suspected to be infected with the novel coronavirus.

— The newly-built Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan began accepting patients infected with the virus.

Feb 3:

— Wuhan planned to convert three existing venues, including a gymnasium and an exhibition center, into hospitals to receive patients infected with the novel coronavirus.

Feb 2:

— A makeshift hospital of Huoshenshan Hospital was delivered after a 10-day construction in Wuhan to treat the infected.

— The headquarters for the control and treatment of the epidemic caused by the novel coronavirus in Hubei announced that it would conduct centralized isolation of all suspected infection cases.

— China's finance authorities at all levels had allocated 47 billion yuan as of midnight Feb 2 for the coronavirus prevention and control work.

Feb 1:

— Premier Li Keqiang called for greater efforts to speed up the manufacturing and secure the supply of key medical products to help curb the epidemic caused by the novel coronavirus.

— Authorities in Hubei announced that the Spring Festival holiday in the province would be extended to Feb 13 to curb the virus spread. All schools in the province would postpone the opening of the new semester until further notice.

Jan 29:

— Lhasa, capital of Southwest China's Tibet autonomous region, reported the first suspected case of novel coronavirus pneumonia. The region then activated the top-level emergency response to the epidemic. By Jan 29, all the provincial-level regions on the Chinese mainland have launched the top-level response to contain the epidemic.

— China had allocated 27.3 billion yuan to support the battle against the novel coronavirus in the country.

Jan 28:

— The traffic management bureau of the Ministry of Public Security released a notification, urging the public to limit road travel amid intensifying efforts to battle the novel coronavirus outbreak.

— Over 190,000 police officers were dispatched across China to ensure road safety and transportation support to the epidemic prevention and control during the holiday.

Jan 27:

— Premier Li Keqiang called for speeding up the construction of the makeshift hospital of Huoshenshan for treating patients infected with the novel coronavirus in his inspection to Wuhan.

— China extended the Spring Festival holiday to Feb 2 and postponed school openings, while transport restrictions were adopted in various areas to further contain the coronavirus epidemic.

— China's top economic planner allocated a total of 300 million yuan to support Wuhan's battle against the novel coronavirus. Chinese authorities also boosted financial aid for medical treatment of confirmed or suspected coronavirus-infected patients.

Jan 26:

— Chinese authorities announced that trading of wild animals would be suspended nationwide to curb the spreading of COVID-19.

Jan 25:

— The Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee held a meeting on the prevention and control of the outbreak of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus. The meeting decided to set up a CPC Central Committee leading group to oversee the work. Groups would also be sent to Hubei province to direct work on the ground.

Jan 24:

— Wuhan decided to build two makeshift hospitals — Huoshenshan with 1,000 beds and Leishenshan with a capacity of 1,600 beds — to treat the new pneumonia patients. The Huoshenshan and Leishenshan hospitals would be put into use on Feb 3 and Feb 5, respectively.

— Hubei upgraded its public health emergency response from Level II to Level I. Other provincial-level regions, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Chongqing, Guangdong, Zhejiang, Hunan, and Anhui have also activated the top-level response to the epidemic situation.

— The country is mobilizing medical resources nationwide to aid Wuhan and control the epidemic. The first group of 135 medical workers from hospitals in Shanghai flew to Wuhan on the night of Jan 17.

— Wuhan rolled out unprecedented measures to curb the spread of the deadly novel coronavirus. From 10 am on Jan 23, all public transportation, including city buses, subways, ferries, and long-distance coaches have been suspended, and outbound channels at airports and railway stations have also been closed. Citizens should not leave the megacity without specific reasons and should wear masks in public places.

Jan 21:

— China vowed to take preventive and control measures of category A infectious diseases to effectively fight against the pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus. The pneumonia has been classified as the category B infectious diseases and a quarantinable disease at the border.

Jan 20:

— A high-level expert team of China's National Health Commission (NHC) confirmed people-to-people transmission of the novel coronavirus and infections among medical staff. Zhong Nanshan, a renowned respiratory expert and head of the team, said the geographical distribution of Wuhan's infection cases indicated a close relationship between the epidemic and a local seafood market.

Jan 19:

— Wuhan reported 17 new coronavirus-related pneumonia cases. Among the infected patients, 12 are male and five are female. They are aged between 30 and 79, and three of them were in critical condition.

Jan 17:

— A second patient with coronavirus-related pneumonia has been confirmed dead in Wuhan.

Jan 11:

— The NHC said that China would share with the WHO information on the genome sequence of a new-type coronavirus detected in viral pneumonia cases reported in Wuhan, after the pathogen was identified on Jan 7.

— One patient with viral pneumonia has been confirmed dead in Wuhan, and seven others were in critical condition.

Jan 9:

— Preliminary lab results showed a new-type coronavirus had caused viral pneumonia in Wuhan, according to Xu Jianguo, a Chinese expert who led a team to evaluate the pathogen test results.

Jan 8:

— Eight patients with viral pneumonia of unknown causes in Wuhan have been cured of the disease and were discharged from hospital.

Jan 5:

— A total of 59 viral pneumonia cases of unknown cause had been reported in Wuhan by the Morning of Jan 5.

Jan 3:

— A total of 44 viral pneumonia cases have been reported in Wuhan. All the patients have been put in quarantine, with 11 in serious condition and the others in stable condition as of 8 am on Jan 3.

Dec 31:

— The 27 pneumonia cases in Wuhan have been identified as viral pneumonia, according to the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission. The patients, including seven in serious condition, reported symptoms including fever and difficulty breathing. All the patients have been put in quarantined treatment.