How mainland China is working to prevent the spread of coronavirus

Since the start of the novel coronavirus outbreak in December, the disease has infected more than 70,000 people and has reached a death toll of 1,868 people in mainland China.

According to analysis done by CNN, travel restrictions, of varying degrees are still being enforced in various provinces and cities across mainland China including Hubei, Liaoning, Beijing and Shanghai affecting over 780 million people. These restrictions, which appear to be China’s main effort to control the disease, include everything from self-quarantines to limits on who can come and go from neighborhoods.


spread of coronavirus
BEIJING, CHINA – FEBRUARY 14: A Chinese worker wears a protective mask and goggles as he cleans and disinfects machines at a nearly empty subway station during rush hour on February 14, 2020 in Beijing, China. The number of cases of the deadly new coronavirus COVID-19 rose to more than 55000 in mainland China Friday, in what the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global public health emergency. China continued to lock down the city of Wuhan in an effort to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease which medicals experts have confirmed can be passed from human to human. In an unprecedented move, Chinese authorities have maintained and in some cases tightened the travel restrictions on the city which is the epicentre of the virus and also in municipalities in other parts of the country affecting tens of millions of people. The number of those who have died from the virus in China climbed to over 1380 on Friday, mostly in Hubei province, and cases have been reported in other countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea, India, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and several others. The World Health Organization has warned all governments to be on alert and screening has been stepped up at airports around the world. Some countries, including the United States, have put restrictions on Chinese travellers entering and advised their citizens against travel to China. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

Some of the strictest measures can be found in four cities in Hubei province, the epicenter of the outbreak:

  • The cities of Wuhan, Huanggang, Shiyan and Xiaogan have completely sealed off all residential complexes and communities.
  • The use of non-essential vehicles on local roadways is also banned.
  • Residents in each city receive daily necessities from neighborhood and community committees as they are not permitted to leave their homes.

Despite the continuation of its spread, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organization, said that the virus is not as deadly as SARS or MERS, both of which are related to the current coronavirus, and more than 80% of patients “have mild disease and will recover.” Reports say it could take up to 18 months before a coronavirus vaccine is available.

Here’s a look at where the cases are throughout mainland China, according to WHO data. These numbers may differ from those reported by Chinese health officials, who report updated totals at different times than the WHO.