The first group of COVID-19 patients, three confirmed cases in Haikou and one asymptomatic carrier in Sanya, have been cured and discharged after comprehensive treatment at designated hospitals, as the latest outbreak is still evolving rapidly in some regions across the tropical island of Hainan, said local authorities on Friday.
On Thursday, Hainan recorded 595 confirmed cases and 614 asymptomatic carriers. Among them, the coastal city of Sanya logged 471 of the confirmed cases and 567 of the the asymptomatic carriers. As of noon on Friday, Hainan had registered a total of 2,814 confirmed cases and 2,340 asymptomatic carriers since the first case was reported in Sanya on Aug 1, said officials at a news conference held in Haikou on Friday afternoon.
The epidemic, which has spilled over into 13 cities and counties across the island, is developing rapidly in about half of the affected regions, Du Jianwei, an official with the Hainan provincial health commission, said at the meeting.
He said, however, quick progress has been seen in the processing of nucleic acid test samples and the medical treatment of the patients as more than 11,700 medical experts and workers have rushed over to aid the anti-epidemic efforts in Hainan, from 19 provinces and regions across the country.
Hainan is sparing no efforts in the anti-epidemic work and will better coordinate medical resources to ensure timely treatment of the patients. In the past week, Hainan has built makeshift hospitals with a total of 8,992 beds, said Du.
Meanwhile, Hainan has also set up special working groups to see that stranded tourists can be sent back home as soon as possible, pending that they pass the health checks and meet all the epidemic prevention requirements, said officials with the local tourism authority.
The epidemic left around 80,000 tourists stranded in Sanya, a popular destination for vacationers in China.
As of 6 am on Friday, Hainan had co-arranged 34 flights for 5,437 tourists stranded by the island's latest outbreak to return home to Shanghai and in provinces including Shaanxi, Sichuan, Jiangsu, Guangdong, Hunan, Zhejiang, Hebei and Shandong.
The return journey of all stranded tourists will be put under close-loop management. After landing in their hometown, they will be quarantined for three days in designated hotels, followed by four days of home isolation, in line with the anti-epidemic measures, said local officials.