No new cases of local coronavirus infection were reported in Wuhan, China, for the first time since the outbreak began there in late December.
The country’s health ministry said Thursday that 34 cases were detected over the last 24 hours, but all of the positive results came from people arriving to the country from abroad. “It’s very clear that the actions taken in China have almost brought to an end their first wave of infections,” Ben Cowling, a professor at Hong Kong University’s School of Public Health told media. However, experts have said there will need to be 14 consecutive days without new cases for the outbreak to be considered over. There is a danger: infections could re-emerge once lockdowns are lifted across the country. Until now, the country has recorded 80,928 cases of the virus and 3,245 deaths. Some 70,420 people have been released from hospitals and 7,263 are still being treated.
To contain the virus, Beijing locked down large swathes of territory and the vast transportation network, curtailing the movement of its people, in some cases even to hospitals. It closed factories and effectively shut down the economy.The measures affected close to 500 million people. Some parts of China managed better than others. Chinese scientists sequenced the virus genome and shared it.