Wuhan and its success story of prompt and effective control of COVID-19 infection!
The world might blame Wuhan for starting the coronavirus pandemic. But the success story on how the city controlled the deadly virus is worth noting! What started in December 2019 as an unknown ended in mid-May 2020 as a last case of a virus about whom substantial knowledge was available. The prompt and effective control of COVID-19 in Wuhan is a success story for all to know and learn from.
The origin and initial days of COVID-19 in Wuhan
Wuhan is the capital of Hubei province in China. In December 2019, there were suddenly a large number of severe cases of respiratory infection occurring in Wuhan. The treating medical experts sounded the red alert. Though initially the Chinese authorities did not heed to their warning, they soon realized that what the doctors were saying was right. And immediate steps to curb the spread and fatality due to the deadly virus were commenced.
Side-by-side studies on the deadly virus started and researchers came to know that it is a type of coronavirus and named it COVID-19. It probably originated from the wet markets of Wuhan where seafood and fresh wild meat is sold. On 20 January 2020, China sounded the alarm and the rest of the world also came to know about it. But by then, people who had traveled out of China in December 2019 and January 2020 carried with them the virus and led to spread of the infection in other parts of the world.
The steps for the viral spread control
The Chinese authorities sprung into action. They immediately suspended the intrastate and inter-state buses. The government immediately clamped a lockdown on 23 January 2020. And closed all entertainment centers. They put a ban on all public gatherings.
By early February, the condition in Wuhan was critical. There emerged a shortage of doctors, paramedics, PPE, ventilators, sanitizers and other medical gadgets. The government immediately mobilized these from neighboring areas.
Doctors from neighboring provinces came in to help. Several top officials had to go and provincial administration started building temporary hospitals to accommodate the increasing number of cases.
More about how everyone helped!
Many people came up as volunteers to assist the over-burdened medical teams. The government officials, doctors, health workers and volunteers worked jointly and in coordination. These together immediately isolated and monitored vigilantly the cases. They all set to track, test, and treat all contacts. They identified four groups of cases: severe, those with mild to moderate symptoms, suspected cases, and contacts of positive cases. And they put patients with severe disease into hospitals, and shunted those with milder symptoms to temporary hospitals.
Additionally, they placed those who were suspected cases or contacts of positive cases in local hotels.
Medical experts such as Zhong Nanshan and Zhang Wenhong not only led their medical team, but also provided and disseminated the right kind of information to the masses. They used electronic and social media to let their knowledge reach the people. They also provided moral support. The state gave all the financial help to the doctors and the patients.
Volunteers with the community members handled everything during the lockdown time. Their quick, coordinated response guided more by doctors and less by politicians did the trick and now Wuhan is back to normal. They are also ready for a second wave of this virus, if any!!!