The COVID-19 threat level in the last existing medium-risk areas on the Chinese mainland had been downgraded to low on Monday, marking the mainland’s elimination of all medium- and high-risk areas for COVID-19.
The local anti-epidemic headquarters in northeast China’s Heilongjiang Province made the decision on Monday to downgrade the county of Wangkui, where cluster infections were reported in early January, to a low-risk area, as no new confirmed or asymptomatic cases were reported over the past two weeks.
On Sunday, Shijiazhuang, capital of north China’s Hebei Province, which was hit by a recent resurgence of COVID-19, announced the decision to downgrade its last medium-risk district.
The city’s Gaocheng District was downgraded to a low-risk area on Monday after local communities found no new confirmed cases during screening over the past two weeks, with all results coming back negative in district-wide nucleic acid testing.
Meanwhile, the city of Xinle under the administration of Shijiazhuang lifted its closed management, allowing residents to move freely into and out of and gradually resume life and work.
Xinle was downgraded to a low-risk area in early February, but the closed management continued due to safety concerns.
The vice mayor said the city of Shijiazhuang will continue to discourage mass gathering and enforce other regular anti-virus measures.
The northern Chinese province has managed to tame a rebound in COVID-19 cases since early January.
Also, public cultural venues and stadiums in Shijiazhuang resumed operation on Monday.
The city reopened libraries, museums and galleries under strict epidemic prevention and control measures.
Public cultural venues will require reservations in advance and cap the number of visitors to 50 percent, said Zhao Junfang with the city’s bureau for culture, broadcasting and tourism.
Ren Weiwei, head of the city’s sports bureau, said open-air sports venues will be fully opened and indoor ones will cap the number of visitors.
Shijiazhuang also allowed restaurants to resume dine-in service, while requiring them to conduct regular ventilation and disinfection, shorten dining hours and provide serving chopsticks and spoons.
Customers will be requested to undergo temperature scanning and wear masks before entering restaurants.
As of Sunday, no new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases had been reported for a week on China’s mainland, according to the National Health Commission.
The commission received reports of 11 new imported COVID-19 cases on Sunday. By the end of Sunday, a total of 4,939 imported cases had been reported on the mainland. Among them, 4,754 had been discharged from hospitals following recovery, and 185 remained hospitalized. No deaths had been reported among the imported cases.
The total confirmed COVID-19 cases in China’s mainland now stands at 89,842, while the death toll is unchanged at 4,636.