If decades ago, had someone prognosticated the whole city to shut down due to some disease, people would have laughed it off. Many would have deemed it as an enticing plot for a movie. However, amid the shocking surge in records of coronavirus cases and its subsequent variants, the joke seems to materialize in reality. It had started to make sense when China decided to seal off one whole city of Nanjing with 47 new covid cases reported this Wednesday.
Nanjing, a megacity and capital of East China's Jiangsu Province, noticed a recent spike in the number of coronavirus cases. As the health officials studied the strain through testing and sequencing, the delta variant of the coronavirus was found. Till then, 23 people tested positive for the coronavirus, out of whom twenty people found positive work at Lukou airport in the city where the delta strain was initially found. The contacts and other workers' were tracked down and send for testing. Their reports came out to be positive. The city management also confirmed that the virus was detected in some flight passengers who flew out from the city. The total tally of covid cases in Nanjing accounts to 150.
WHAT IS THE DELTA VARIANT?
Delta variant is a highly contagious SARS-CoV-2 virus strain, first found in India in December 2020. After its finding, it spread vastly and has emerged as one of the main concerns in the pandemic situation. Many other countries around the world reported cases of the variant. The CDC and WHO both marked this particular strain as a 'variant of concern". Recent studies also found that the delta strain of the virus could also infect fully vaccinated people.
Seeing the severity of the situation, China's government decided to seal the city, consequently incarcerating 9.3 million people. Soon after the decision came to the fore, the officials started to impose restrictions on the town. The regulations suspended retail pharmacies from selling antipyretic, cough, antiviral and antibiotic medicines to any citizen. Major hospitals other than emergencies are implementing appointment registration. Venues have been closed, and offline training services have also been suspended.
The health officials have asked the citizens not to leave the city until necessary as it has started the second round of all-inclusive nucleic acid testing. The city will soon increase its testing capabilities with six air-inflated "Falcon" labs currently in the making process. The delta cases spread to another part of China as five provinces and nine cities reported cases related to the Nanjing outbreak. After studying the variant virus cases, Ding Jie from Nanjing Centre for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that this Delta strain has some new characteristics than previous delta variants. They have high adaptability and virus load, fast-spreading, and more prolonged treatment with severe illness.
Currently, the city of Nanjing is under strict watch. The restrictions included shutting down public places like pools, bars, mahjong halls, parks for the public. The number of people entering areas of importance such as pharmacies, wholesale markets, supermarkets, and supermalls is also restricted. Non- residents including delivery personals are forbidden entry into the city. Travelling operations such as bus tours and flights are facing suspension because of the variant outbreak.
After the rise of covid-19, China took better measures and successfully managed to curb the growth of the virus in the country. The situation was going back to normal when it is again attacked by the highly contagious strain of the virus. The devastation the country saw due to the first wave of the pandemic is still refreshed in its citizens' minds. Hence, this time China is not taking any risks and trying to stop the virus with its might. China has reported 922,811 cases of corona, in which 87,288 people recovered and 4636 succumbed to death.
IMAGE FROM TIMESNOWNEWS
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