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The Lancet article reviews China's COVID-19 response | Updated: 2021-04-13 16:26
A resident receives nucleic acid testing for COVID-19 at Mengmao village of Mengmao township, Ruili city, Southwest China's Yunnan province, March 31, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

In an editorial published on Saturday, medical journal The Lancet reviewed China's COVID-19 response strategy and discussed how China has managed to control the epidemic and what lessons the global scientific community can learn from China's experiences.

Efforts to control the pandemic in China have so far successfully prevented resurgence and importation of new cases while maintaining the normalization of social life and economic activities. Sporadic COVID-19 outbreaks in some parts of the country were reported, but they were well contained, the article said.

It said China's strategy was built on active case finding and case management with identification and quarantine of close contacts, as well as risk-based lifting of restrictions.

Chinese authorities aim to test each suspected case and all close contacts of those infected, the editorial said, citing the fight against the outbreak in Qingdao, East China's Shandong province, in October 2020 as an example. A pooled testing approach coordinated by the government with the cooperation of residents enabled the coastal city to complete 10.9 million nucleic acid tests within 5 days.

The article also noted that Chinese people are generally adhering to non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as avoiding large gatherings, although few COVID-19 cases have been reported. After the government called for people to cut unnecessary travel during the Spring Festival holiday this year, there was a significant drop in the number of passenger trips across the country, it said.

China's public health measures, as well as the public's compliance, largely owing to high trust in the government, have contributed to the effective response, the article said.

Elements of China's approach might not be applicable in other countries. However, China's domestic successes in controlling COVID-19 stand in contrast with outcomes elsewhere, and other countries should learn what public health lessons they can, it said.

When it comes to science and health, collaboration is much more productive than antagonism. Such collaborations are as important now as ever. This is not a time for blame or competition between countries but a time to work together on the common threats to all people, the editorial said.

Here is the link to the editorial

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