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China keeps high alert for novel coronavirus

BEIJING
2020-01-20 01:27

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BEIJING, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- The source of a novel coronavirus that has caused dozens of pneumonia cases in central China's Wuhan remains unclear, the National Health Commission said Sunday, vowing a nationwide vigilance against the epidemic though it is "still preventable and controllable."

There is much more to learn about how the virus spreads, and the mutation of the virus still needs close monitoring, the commission said.

During recent days, the commission has dispatched work teams to all provincial regions to guide the local work on epidemic prevention and control.

The commission has activated the nationwide daily report mechanism and supplied nucleic acid testing kits to intensify the surveillance.

Strict and effective measures will be taken to prevent the spread of the virus, to detect and treat infections in time, to identify the source of the virus, and to strengthen the monitoring of its mutation, the commission said.

It said extra attention will be paid to the epidemic situation during the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, when hundreds of millions of trips will be made across the country.

The commission also stressed the importance of hygiene, particularly the cleaning at market places.

Wuhan has reported a total of 62 novel coronavirus-related pneumonia cases as of the end of Friday, among whom two had died, eight were in critical condition, and 19 had been discharged from hospital.

A total of 681 among the 763 close contacts placed under medical observation have been released. No cases were found among the close contacts.
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