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24 Mar 2020 | 07:47 AM UTC

China: Authorities lift lockdown in most of Hubei province as of March 25 /update 45

Chinese authorities to lift lockdown in Hubei province with the exception of Wuhan as of March 25; follow authority directives

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Event

On Tuesday, March 24, Chinese authorities announced that the government will end the two-month lockdown of Hubei province as of Wednesday, March 25 as domestic cases of the virus continue to subside. The city of Wuhan, however, is exempt and will therefore remain on lockdown until Wednesday, April 8. The Health Commission for China's Hubei province announced it would remove all travel restrictions into and out of the province and that people will be allowed to leave on the basis of certain health requirements that, as of Tuesday, March 24, remain unclear.

As of Tuesday, March 24, there are 81, 649 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 3276 confirmed deaths, and 72, 848 recoveries nationwide. Further spread of the virus expected.

Context

The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.

Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.

Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and trouble breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.

Advice

Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly, and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.

To reduce the risk of transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:

  • Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
  • When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
  • If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.