An eyewitness account of the way China is handling coronavirus - GulfToday

An eyewitness account of the way China is handling coronavirus


A recovered patient (in wheelchair), 98, is discharged from Leishenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China, on Sunday. AFP

Sayyed Haleem Shah, a Pakistani international PhD student at Tianjin University China, considers himself lucky to witness the steps taken by the Chinese government and its people to combat the coronavirus.

He says, “It should indeed be a great source of inspiration for the whole world, once the epidemic is over, that the stories of the unsung heroes will be heard. What I witnessed here is really something amazing which forced me to write about the greatness of China and its people. The response from the Chinese government and its people was a gigantic one. It is a certified proof of China being a nation of strong and committed people.

AleemShahPhD'It should indeed be a great source of inspiration for the whole world, once the epidemic is over, that the stories of the unsung heroes will be heard.'

Some of the steps taken by the Chinese government to overcome the crises are presented with an aim to present it as an inspiration for other countries.


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Shah points out at medical emergency: “The first step the Chinese officials took was to declare a medical emergency throughout the country.

In China the top to bottom spread of information is communicated almost instantly and it takes the least amount of time for the local authorities to implement them.

The Chinese government announced building of two new hospitals in Wuhan city only for patients suffering from the coronavirus disease.

The special part was they accomplished that within two weeks, which is a benchmark example of hard work, dedication and commitment to a cause. Medicines and medical equipment were supplied to every corner of the country with major focus on Hubei province.

A public message was effectively communicated to reduce outdoor activities as much as possible, personal protection and hand hygiene was emphasised, wearing of masks was strictly implemented.

A health official checks the temperature of a student at Tianjin University, China. 

Quarantine:  “Chinese officials took another step to quarantine people from Wuhan and Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus.

“Later on the same was implemented in other cities and provinces with the basic aim being to mitigate the spread of the virus.

The best part which inspired me is the response of the masses, the inhabitants of the societies, they accepted the challenge and came strong, though it is really a hard task to stay indoors for a long period of time. People had to face numerous difficulties like suspension of work, suspension of businesses, suspension of classes for students, no public or social gatherings. The price to pay is a big one but the people’s commitment to win the war against the virus is indeed inspirational. At the end of January 2020 throughout China, public places, hotels, parks and educational institutes and you can count more were being closed, but the basic necessities for living are accessible to everyone.

ForeignersStudentsInChinaTwo foreign students take a selfie outside Tianjin University China.

“Though the cities are almost closed food, water, electricity and all the basic requirements of life are accessible to everyone. They have developed a mechanism to supply all the things of basic need on emergency basis, it is indeed a proof of the greatness of this nation.

A staff member sells masks at a Yifeng pharmacy in Wuhan, China.  File /AP

Shah highlights the bid towards public awareness through technology: “There is no doubt about Chinese advancement in scientific technologies. 5-G was recently introduced in Wuhan city, and this modern technology along with others is being effectively utilised in creating awareness among the people and also for medical help in treating the patient.

 “As there is a high level of risk involved in going from one city to another, medical experts can see and help patients by studying their reports from other parts of the country through the effective utilisation of 5G technology. The shortage of medical experts is effectively minimised and every patient is getting proper attention. The research to find out a curable vaccine for the disease is effectively communicated through the utilisation of modern technology.

People wear masks as they arrive from the International terminal in Toronto on Saturday. AP

 “Another amazing use of technology I saw was the development of different mobile phone applications and their use to help the public by showing the real-time location of the infected people to warn people from going to those places. Technology is used to order foodstuff and a proper and safe channel developed to deliver it with the minimum interaction between humans.

Sharing of real-time data: “Data is collected from the whole country and is communicated in real time about how many people are confirmed infected, suspected as infected and about the total deaths. A daily temperature check is done in every community and communicated for official records through social media like WeChat groups and many more. A strict health care is adopted in every city town and village.”

The writer is a Pakistani student studying for his PhD at Tianjin University, China.

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