3 Feb 2020
Bao Changjun, member of the novel coronavirus control expert team of Jiangsu Provincial Health Commission and Director of the Acute Infectious Disease Institute, answered questions of public concern during an interview with media on the morning of February 2. Below are excerpts from the interview:
Q: How do you see the current situation of novel coronavirus epidemic prevention and control in Jiangsu?
A: The epidemic is caused by a new strain of coronavirus that has never been identified in human. Our research on this virus is still very limited, and its pathogenesis needs to be further studied. All these factors plus the lack of effective drugs make epidemic prevention and control ever more complex. Given the epidemiological studies on the confirmed cases in Jiangsu, the province is seeing the cooccurence of primary and secondary cases with the proportion of clustered cases on the rise. Community transmission is more likely to happen. The current situation in Jiangsu, I think, is serious. We shall keep alert and focus on key measures like reducing crowd gathering and population flow, early detection and early isolation.
Q: How to reduce crowd gathering or population flow?
A: It is suggested that individuals go out as little as possible and avoid gatherings during the holiday (Of the clustered cases in Jiangsu, one was caused by a group of people playing Mahjong). People shall avoid going to crowded public sites and if possible, maintain a certain distance with one another (normally a distance of 1 to 1.5 meters). Wearing masks is a must in badly-ventilated and crowded places. Communities and employers shall not host large-scale events unless necessary.
Q: We’ve noticed some people stay outdoors without masks on and dance in the squares given the nice weather in the last days. Is there any risk for them?
A: The novel coronavirus is mainly transmitted through droplets and contact. Gatherings and close contact between people will to a certain extent increase the risk of infection. Everyone has a role to play in epidemic prevention and control and is thus expected to keep cautious. Instead of going to badly-ventilated places and gatherings and dancing in the squares, people are suggested to work out at home. Should some touch public items outside, avoid touching eyes, mouth and nose with hands. Take disposable alcohol-based hand sanitizer when going out and wash hands immediately upon arriving home.
Q: Given the current situation, how to realize early detection or isolation?
A: The communities shall be mobilized for joint efforts in prevention and control as part of our community-level grid governance. Physical checks shall be carried out on those who just came or returned to Jiangsu. Those from severely-infected areas should be put in medical quarantine. Prompt quarantine and reporting must be done when it comes to suspected cases. Campaigns on patriotic sanitation and environmental management are expected to be launched.
As for professional personnel, they are advised to identify cases, give treatment in quarantine, timely trace and isolate close contacts, cut the transmission path as best as they could, and engage in disinfection and health education as per instructions, so as to protect public health.
Q: What has Jiangsu learned from the epidemic situation in other provinces?
A: The situation of the epidemic in Hubei remains severe. Neighboring provinces and cities including Zhejiang, Shanghai, Anhui and Shandong, and the farther Guangdong province which features large flows of population, have reported an increasing number of cases in the recent week. Given the imbalance in the prevention and control strength across the country and the resources available, neglect or inadequate prevention and control efforts might happen in some regions. We therefore shall not only watch out for imported cases from Hubei, but also those from other provinces and the occurrence of local cases caused by transmission of imported ones.
Given the considerations above, Jiangsu shall pay close attention to all the personnel coming or returning to the province, conduct health screenings and checks, and ensure that the flow of population will not impact the prevention and control work. We call on the public to avoid traveling as much as possible when the epidemic is prevalent.
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2020/02/03 10:27
No confirmed cases reported in Changzhou today (3rd, Feb.)

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