Defending public health
BY wangxingwei from 21st Century
Published 2020-03-09
Chinese scientists spare no effort in identifying the pathogen of the novel coronavirus. CHINA DAILY

As a developing country, China has made great progress in improving its public health system and response mechanism, although there is still room to improve. When the novel coronavirus epidemic broke out, quick and efficient responsive measures followed.

The novel coronavirus was first reported on Dec 31 when 27 cases of pneumonia of an unknown cause were detected in Wuhan, Hubei province. China has spared no effort in identifying the pathogen and learning the full genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus.

According to Xinhua News Agency, the authorities managed to identify that the pneumonia is linked to the novel coronavirus on Jan 7 and shared the full genetic sequence of the virus with the World Health Organization (WHO) on Jan 11.

“China has wasted no time in identifying the pathogen and sharing the full gene sequence of the novel coronavirus with the WHO, earning valuable time for the world,” Xinhua News Agency noted.

The Chinese government has adopted an open, transparent and highly responsible attitude to safeguard national and global public health security.

In addition to holding daily briefings, the government also updates the numbers of new confirmed cases, deaths and recoveries in detail. In order to share the most up-to-date COVID-19 control and prevention information with the rest of the world, a critical multilingual manual was published in both English and French by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in March.

China’s swift and decisive actions as well as its commitment to transparency and cooperation have won worldwide appreciation.

Addressing the 146th session of the WHO Executive Board meeting that kicked off on Feb 2, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said if it weren’t for China’s efforts, the number of cases outside China would have been much higher.

Indeed, the epidemic should not be a barrier to state-to-state communication but a catalyst for strengthening international cooperation. At least, China is trying to do so.

(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Ji Yuan)
Pathogen  病原体
Genetic sequence  基因序列
Transparent  透明的
Confirmed cases  确诊病例
Cooperation  合作
Catalyst  催化剂