Coronavirus Outbreak: 6 Lessons Learnt From China

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Coronavirus Outbreak: 6 Lessons Learnt From China

Post by dentalgist » Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:06 pm

Hangzhou, the capital city of Zhejiang Province, more than 1,000 miles away from Wuhan, the epicentre of COVID-19, implemented multiple control and prevention measures from the very beginning of the outbreak.

Here’s what we learned.

1. Speed and accuracy are the keys to identification and detection.

Within a week of identifying the unknown virus, China successfully sequenced it and reported the genetic information to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The rapid identification of COVID-19 allowed scientists around the world to immediately start developing test kits, treatment options and vaccines.

2. Make the right decisions at the right time, the right place, for the right people.

The experience in China reinforced the importance of listening to science and public health experts during pandemic events. And overreacting is better than not reacting.

3. Big data and information technology are important to avoiding a rebound.

Hangzhou, where Alibaba is headquartered, was one of the first cities to use big data and information technology in the prevention and control of COVID-19. They named the approach “one map, one QR code, and one index.”

It’s been two weeks since select businesses and organizations have been allowed to reopen to workers. Here are policies they implemented:

1. Businesses reopened in several phases based on priorities. For example, healthcare-related facilities were allowed to open first.

2. Restrictions were eased based on track records.

3. Health QR codes were established for everyone in the city and everyone who entered the city. The green code allows you to move freely. The yellow code requires a seven-day self-quarantine. The red code requires a 14-day self-quarantine. The yellow and red codes can be turned green after the quarantine time. This health surveillance system has been applied in most cities in Zhejiang Province, and will be implemented in other provinces.

4. Each individual must monitor and record their temperature and update their profile daily in order to maintain their health status level.

5. The health database is closely monitored by Hangzhou’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

4. Evaluate medical resources and response systems. Are we ready for a pandemic? How much stock do we need? Do we have enough health care personnel, and how do we protect them?

People in China are courageous and united in the effort to combat COVID-19.

In Hangzhou, 204 public health physicians have been investigating cases, identifying close contacts, and making sure they remain under surveillance. Also in Hangzhou, doctors completed the world’s first double-lung transplant surgery on a COVID-19 patient.

Over the past 6-8 weeks, however, 31 medical teams consisting of more than 42,000 doctors and nurses were sent to Wuhan to combat the outbreak. (Zhejiang Province sent 1,985 healthcare workers and, as of today, not one is infected.) Two new hospitals with over 1,000 beds each were built in less than 10 days in Wuhan.

5. Implementation of preventive measures in communities, schools, businesses, government offices and homes can influence the trajectory of this epidemic.

In fighting COVID-19, everyone is equal. Everyone has the same responsibility and shares the same risk.

Careful planning and clear guidance are helpful. Hangzhou has allowed employees to go back to work in several phases. Many businesses, organizations, schools and universities are successfully implementing computer-based online learning using technology like Zoom meetings, which could be models for future development.

6. Keep the public well informed.

China has provided continuous, clear communication to the public. In Hangzhou, for example, the major news outlet provides daily updates on the number of COVID-19 cases and clinical treatment outcomes, plans to be implemented and guidelines and procedures to follow.

We developed an easy-to-understand educational materials for students and the public with information about COVID-19 and how to prevent the spread. We speak on television news and write online papers. We believe it’s the responsibility of all public health experts to provide factual and scientific information to people and to lead the way in fighting the disease. ... from-china
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