China records 42 new cases in Fujian’s Covid-19 Delta outbreak

22-Sep-2021 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 7:07 AM Print This Post

Hopes that China’s Fujian province had turned the corner of its Covid-19 outbreak were put on hold on Tuesday, with a surge of 42 new cases in the midst of Mid-Autumn Festival celebrations, bringing the total to 408, including three asymptomatic cases.

All of the new infections were within the southeastern coastal province, with 36 in Xiamen, five in Putian and one in Quanzhou. No deaths were reported. A day earlier, Fujian had recorded 28 new cases, the lowest number in the past seven days. The outbreak, which began in Putian on September 10, is fuelled by the highly transmissible Delta variant.

Vice-premier Sun Chunlan, who is leading the national Covid-19 response, continued her tour of the province with further visits to Xiamen and Zhangzhou on Tuesday, according to Fujian Daily. While the fight against the outbreak had achieved some “initial success”, there was still some “uncertainty”, she said. “We cannot be blindly optimistic, we further cannot let our guard down.”

Sun called for faster and more complete nucleic acid testing, as well as more detailed epidemiological investigations to control the spread of the virus. She also called for the strict management of quarantine areas, along with increasing the amount of environmental testing and sanitising at the sites.

Sun, who arrived in Fujian on Saturday, has made several visits to the cities affected by the outbreak.

Tuesday is also the last day of the Mid-Autumn Festival holiday in China, traditionally a time of family gatherings. However, authorities across the country have taken measures to curb the spread of the virus during the break. Civil servants and staff at Communist Party bodies, public institutions and state-owned enterprises were asked to stay on duty during the holiday to help tackle the outbreak.

Fujian province announced changes to its health code, adopting a three-colour system sorted by infection risk green, yellow and red.

People with a green health code face no restrictions, while yellow means a ban on entering most public venues, along with requirements for a nucleic acid test and health monitoring. Individuals with a red health code will be subject to quarantine either at home, a medical institution or a designated area.

Contact with an infected person will switch a person’s health code from green to yellow. The code will also change to yellow if the person seeks medical attention for symptoms including fever. Once the potentially infectious period has passed, the code will return to green after submission of a negative test result taken during the health monitoring period.

According to state news agency Xinhua, national officials have continued to advise tourist attractions and transport providers to take measures to prevent the spread of the virus. These include preventing crowds from gathering and monitoring the health of employees.

The National Health Commission’s disease prevention chief Lei Zhenglong asked people to avoid unnecessary travel and to cancel trips to high or medium risk areas. He also suggested people avoid crowded places and restrict family dinners to no more than 10 people.

On Tuesday afternoon, authorities in Harbin capital of China’s northernmost province Heilongjiang ordered the closure of mahjong parlours, cinemas, internet cafes and other venues after a locally transmitted case of Covid-19 emerged. Residents have been asked to pay attention to updates and remain in the city unless absolutely necessary.

According to People’s Daily, the patient has been transferred to the Harbin City infectious diseases hospital for quarantine and treatment.


Category: China

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