Advertisement

China fires 2 health officials after new coronavirus outbreak in northern city

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Chinese President Xi Jinping extends sympathies to President Trump, Melania after COVID-19 diagnosis' Coronavirus: Chinese President Xi Jinping extends sympathies to President Trump, Melania after COVID-19 diagnosis
Coronavirus: Chinese President Xi Jinping extends sympathies to President Trump, Melania after COVID-19 diagnosis – Oct 3, 2020

A hospital president and the director of the health commission in the northern Chinese city of Qingdao have been fired after China’s latest coronavirus outbreak, authorities said Thursday.

A brief notice on the Qingdao city government’s official microblog Thursday said Health Commission Director Sui Zhenhua and Deng Kai, president of Qingdao’s thoracic hospital to which the cases have been linked, were placed under further investigation. No other details were given.

Read more: China to test 9 million people for coronavirus after new outbreak

Authorities ordered testing of all 9 million people in the city after a total of 12 cases, including those not displaying symptoms, were discovered over the weekend, accounting for China’s first local transmissions in about two months.

Similar mass testing campaigns have taken place after previous outbreaks. Testing began with “close contacts, close contacts of those close contacts and more casual contacts,” gradually expanding to all districts of the city, Qingdao’s health department said.

Story continues below advertisement
Click to play video 'Coronavirus: China ‘engaging with relevant countries’ about imported food infected with COVID-19, Foreign Ministry says' Coronavirus: China ‘engaging with relevant countries’ about imported food infected with COVID-19, Foreign Ministry says
Coronavirus: China ‘engaging with relevant countries’ about imported food infected with COVID-19, Foreign Ministry says – Aug 14, 2020

Qingdao is a major commercial harbour and industrial centre known for electronics and the country’s most famous brewery, as well as the home of the Chinese navy’s northern fleet.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

China, where coronavirus was first detected late last year, has largely eradicated the virus domestically but remains on guard against imported cases and a second wave of domestic transmission.

Qingdao on Wednesday reported more than 8 million tests have been conducted, with no additional cases discovered among the almost 5 million results returned.

Read more: China says WHO supported early use of coronavirus vaccine candidate outside of trials

On Thursday, the National Health Commission reported 11 new cases over the past 24 hours, 10 of them imported. The other case listed as asymptomatic was discovered Sept. 24 and had been recategorized as a confirmed case.

Story continues below advertisement

Hospitals were treating 240 people for COVID-19, with another 392 people being kept under observation in isolation for having tested positive without showing symptoms or for being suspected cases.

China has reported 4,634 deaths among 85,622 cases of the disease.