Latest news and updates on the impact of a new strain of coronavirus in mainland China. The virus, which causes the disease Covid-19 and was first reported in Wuhan, has killed more than 3,000 people

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Inside China’s race to sell coronavirus testing kits to the world
As the horror of the coronavirus outbreak in China was unfolding over January’s Lunar New Year holiday, a group of technicians were holed up in a Nanjing facility with a supply of instant noodles, working long hours to develop testing kits for diagnosing the virus. Already at that point, the coronavirus had ripped through the city of Wuhan and was spreading rapidly around China. A handful of diagnostic tests had already been approved by the central government in Beijing, but hundreds of firms in China were still scrambling to develop new ones. “I did not think about applying for approvals in China,” said Zhang Shuwen, founder of Nanjing Liming Bio-products. “The application takes too much ti
China’s ‘mask diplomacy’ met with wariness
As health workers around the globe struggle to find enough hospital beds and medical supplies to cope with the coronavirus crisis, China has stepped in.  So too has Germany, the United States, the European Union and many others. But Beijing’s efforts – which state media has called “China’s solution to fight the pandemic” – have had a mixed reception, and analysts say its “mask diplomacy” will do little to convince critics in the West. Across the globe, more than 3 billion people are living under lockdown measures to limit the spread of the virus, which has infected more than 720,000 people worldwide and killed at least 34,000. Two weeks ago, as Italy emerged as the new epicenter of the pand
Police, public clash over border reopening in China
Chinese police officers from two provinces clashed with each other and members of the public on March 27 in a dispute over the reopening of a provincial border following weeks of quarantine measures to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.
China blocks foreigners as coronavirus center shifts to US and Europe
China will ban most foreigners from entering the country starting at midnight on Friday in an effort to block the spread of the coronavirus through imported cases. Entry visas issued to foreigners will be suspended as an “interim measure,” according to a statement late Thursday by the country’s foreign ministry. “In view of the rapid spread of the new coronavirus epidemic worldwide, China has decided to temporarily suspend entry of foreigners with currently valid visas and residence permits in China,” the ministry said. “The Chinese side will adjust the above measures according to the epidemic situation through separate announcements.” While the global pandemic originated in China months ago
The coronavirus has forever altered how China studies and works
With the coronavirus outbreak crippling normal life in China, technology has rushed to the fore on many fronts as a literal lifesaver. Robots in hospitals, health code apps, online education and remote working all played crucial roles in keeping the country operational with most of the population trapped in self-isolation. But as the devastating outbreak starts to ease within China, and life gradually returns to normal, many are asking whether the pandemic will leave a permanent mark on the way people work and live. The pandemic may even accelerate long-term trends such as the digitalization of education, work and even people.  Xu Yuting, an 18-year-old high school student in eastern China’s
At least 59% of coronavirus cases went unreported in Wuhan, study says
Around 60% of people who contracted the coronavirus in the central Chinese city of Wuhan were asymptomatic or very mild cases not reported to the authorities, according to a study led by a group of Chinese researchers. The paper suggests that by February 18 the total number of infections in Wuhan, the first epicenter of the coronavirus, could have exceeded 125,000, more than three times the number of confirmed cases, 38,020, reported at the time. The estimate adds to a body of research seeking to estimate the true extent of the spread of coronavirus beyond counting patients with clear symptoms of Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus. The study, conducted by researchers from Huazh
The coronavirus pandemic could change the way we look at masks
While mask-wearing has become a part of life in East Asia since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, it has remained rare in the United States and Europe. In some cases, mask wearers of Asian descent have been frowned upon or even assaulted. We look at the history of surgical mask use during disease outbreaks and how they have become shunned in the place where the practice originated: America.
Scientists across the world are racing to find existing drugs that can treat Covid-19
Developing a new drug usually takes years, but scientists are racing against that clock to repurpose existing medications or pre-approved substances to manufacture an antiviral drug to battle Covid-19. As the coronavirus pandemic hit more countries around the world, and death tolls rose, the World Health Organization identified four medications last week and started a global trial. The trial is known as Solidarity. Two of the potential medications are drug cocktails. The non-cocktail treatments center around remdesivir, which was originally designed for treating Ebola, and the antimalaria drug chloroquine. One cocktail is a combination of two HIV drugs, lopinavir and ritonavir. The other co
‘Fearlessly naive’ coronavirus vaccine volunteers recount experience
There may have been diarrhea, high temperatures and a fair bit of apprehension, but 108 people from Wuhan can proudly say they became the first in the country to be injected with a possible vaccine for the rapidly spreading coronavirus. The trials got underway in the central Chinese city, where the virus first emerged, on Thursday. They started just three days after CanSino Biologics – the pharmaceutical company that developed the product in cooperation with the Chinese military – was given the green light by Beijing. According to information published on China’s clinical trial registry, the volunteers – aged from 18 to 60 and in good health – were divided into three groups of 36 and then gi