This morning, when I steped into the Bund Center where I work, the guard stopped me and politely asked me to have my temperature taken. He used the hand-held mini infra red thermometer to point to my head. Just in 1 second, he allowed me to go into the building. It seems other buidling around the has implemented the same rule.
I am really impressed by the effecient of the government now. I don’t know why, but all the departments of the government is working closely. I am always surprised by the speed of the roll out of an action. When I found one change happen in one place/organization, it will happen on the other very soon, sometimes just in one day.
SARS cases in China
The good news is, the number of the new SARS cases in China is 55 today, among them 39 are in Beijing. I still feel bad that 55 is still not a low number, but it is much smaller compared to the numbers before. Very encouraging number!
Online trading boosted
The new car number plate auction will be held online on May 24. It is the effort to use the online trading to avoid gathering.
Update on SARS Situation in China
Thanks Luo for providing the valuable information for us.
The number of new cases of SARS reported in Beijing has been falling for several days in a roll. On Wednesday, the city reported 39 new cases and five deaths, bringing the cumulative number of infections to more than 2,300 and total deaths to 139. Quarantine orders on three hospitals and a residential neighborhood have been lifted. So far, 16,197 have been released from quarantine and 8,813 people are still under observation. (RTHK, Foreign Affairs Office)
Last week, WHO extended its travel warnings to include Tianjin, a nearby city that has reported 171 SARS cases, 102 suspected case, and nine deaths as of May 14. Over 2,000 people are in quarantine for having close contact with SARS patients and suspects in the city. (RTHK, Enorth.com)
Shanghai reported one more confirmed SARS cases last weekend, bringing the number of confirmed SARS cases to seven. One of the confirmed SARS patients is an American. Of the 10 suspected cases, one is Japanese. One of the SARS patients has died. So far, only one death has been reported. (Shanghai Municipal Health Bureau)
Taxicabs drivers are now required to wear gauze masks when working and nearly 50,000 taxicabs are required to be disinfected everyday. In addition, the taxi drivers are required to fill out forms recording the time and place of entry and exit of every passenger. They must then submit the forms to their companies at the conclusion of their work day. (Xinhua)
Shanghai plans to extend its current quarantine and health monitoring measures to include all travellers passing through the city from any of China’s 26 SARS-affected provinces. It was not immediately clear if foreigners would be forced to abide by the same rules, but all travellers will be subject to more stringent health examinations. A mandatory 14-day quarantine for Shanghai residents arriving from the SARS-crisis areas of Guangdong, Shanxi, Inner Mongolia, Beijing and Hong Kong was ordered a week ago. (Shanghai Municipal Health Bureau)
3. NANJING, JIANGSU
In the nearby province of Jiangsu, seven SARS cases and 19 suspected cases have been reported. More than 10,000 people are in quarantine in the provincial capital of Nanjing, which is just 290 km northwest of Shanghai. New anti-SARS measures include putting incoming travellers from SARS-affected areas in quarantine for 15 days. On Monday, local authorities have shut 566 hotels, saunas, hair salons and Internet cafes in a bid to prevent SARS from spreading. (Channel News Asia, China.com.cn)
4. HANGZHOU, ZHEJIANG
More than 1,700 people have been quarantined in Hangzhou where four SARS cases and five suspected cases have been reported. Some 1,200 were put into isolation following the confirmation of three cases of SARS over the past two weeks and another 500 joined them over the weekend. (AFP, China.com.cn)
I am back in Shanghai. At the Hong Kong airport my temperature was taken before I got on to the airplane. After the plane landed at the Shanghai airport, some health worker came on to the plane and took all our temperatures. Then we were let off the plane. At the health checkpoint, out temperatures were taken again.
When I got back to my xiao qu, I went to register myself, and my temperature was taken again. Then I was told to stay put in my home until the 27th.
What a bummer! Let’s hope SARS will be history soon!
glad u got back safely! where did u go register? how did you know where to go? who told you to go where? are they bringing you food to eat? are ppl coming to check your temperatures everyday???
still in hk,
Good job, China! They should apply the same measures to rumor mongers, too!
China Threatens to Execute SARS Spreaders
By CHRISTOPHER BODEEN, Associated Press Writer
BEIJING – China threatened to execute anyone who causes death or injury by deliberately spreading SARS (news – web sites), as officials on Thursday promised more doctors, hospitals and money to fight the flu-like virus in rural areas.
The warning by China’s Supreme Court, reported by the official Xinhua News Agency, appeared to be an effort to force compliance with quarantines and other restrictions. It cited existing laws, many of which include a possible death penalty for even nonviolent offenses, though it often isn’t imposed.
The announcement came as Chinese officials tried to keep severe acute respiratory syndrome from spreading to the countryside, home to many of China’s 1.3 billion people.
Rural areas account for only a fraction of China’s more than 5,100 SARS cases, said officials from the health and finance ministries. But they called for stepped up efforts to shield rural villages, especially by keeping migrant workers from carrying the virus in from cities.
“We haven’t seen a major spread into the countryside, but we can’t tell whether that might change in the future,” Qi Xiaoqiu, director of the Heath Ministry’s Department of Disease Control, said at a news conference.
SARS has killed 271 people on China’s mainland.
The Supreme Court warning says people who violate quarantines and spread the virus can be imprisoned for up to seven years, Xinhua said. It said those who cause death or serious injury by “deliberately spreading” the virus can be sentenced to prison terms of 10 years to life or might be executed.
Chinese authorities frequently threaten harsh punishments, including possible execution, during emergencies.
Most of China’s 100 million migrant workers have remained at their city jobs, and health officials are monitoring 8 million migrants who have returned to their hometowns, the officials said.
Some areas are quarantining returning migrants, while teams are being organized to bring in crops so that workers don’t have to return to help with the harvest, they said.
In hopes of keeping migrants from returning home, urban employers have been told not to fire them, said Liu Jian, vice minister of agriculture. He said the government would offer tax breaks and other financial aid to keep them employed despite a sharp dropoff in business for many urban companies.
Many rural villages also have set up roadblocks to keep away outsiders.
Such measures have helped to curb the spread of SARS but “must not be allowed to disrupt social and economic order,” Liu said.
Liu acknowledged that rural residents in some areas have attacked clinics and other buildings that they thought might house SARS patients. He said that was due in part to the failure by authorities to educate the public about anti-SARS measures.
SARS has focused attention on the decrepit state of China’s rural health care system, which has far fewer doctors and hospitals than cities.
Nationwide, health care spending has failed to keep pace with economic growth for the last 20 years. Most Chinese have no health insurance or government coverage.
The government has promised $240 million in emergency aid to rural health care.
Liu and the other officials said much of it would go toward building and expanding rural clinics. They said medical workers would be sent from China’s military and big cities to help staff them.
Hi Annie, the local qu wei hui people were pounding on my door one day before I arrived back in Shanghai, asking my ayi whether anyone has gone or is back from SARS infected area. So I decided to turn myself in before they execute me! :-)
Dr. Wu came to take my temperature this morning, but I will call her everyday at 10am and 2pm to tell her my body temperature. Someone from the qu wei hui called me at 11am to see whether I needed anything (and probably see whether I have sneaked out of the house). So I am laying low.
Here’s an article about Shanghai’s hotels from AP:
4 Major Shanghai Hotels Close Over SARS
Mon May 12, 9:38 AM ET Add Business – AP to My Yahoo!
By JOE McDONALD, Associated Press Writer
BEIJING – Four major hotels in Shanghai, China’s biggest city, are closing for up to three months due to lack of guests amid the SARS (news – web sites) outbreak, employees said Monday.
The closures of the Peace Hotel, the Shanghai Hotel, the Jinjiang Tower and the Donghu Hotel follow a steep decline in travel and add to the economic devastation of SARS, which has killed at least 252 people on China’s mainland. Airlines, restaurants and other travel-related businesses are expected to suffer huge losses.
Shanghai has reported only seven SARS cases and one death, but foreign tourists have heeded advisories to avoid China and the country is telling its own people not to travel.
“We’re closing because there are no customers,” said a receptionist at the Peace Hotel, an Art Deco landmark on the Shanghai riverfront that was built in 1920.
The 380-room hotel closed Monday and will reopen Aug. 12, said the receptionist, who wouldn’t give her name. She said most of its staff already were on leave and managers weren’t available to comment.
It wasn’t immediately clear how many employees of the four hotels would be affected. Phone calls to the Shanghai Tourism Commission weren’t answered.
The Shanghai Hotel is closing Wednesday for renovations and a date to reopen hasn’t been set, said a receptionist there who wouldn’t give her name. She said employees are to be furloughed with a 600-yuan-a-month ($75-a-month) living allowance.
The Donghu Hotel also is closing, said an employee who answered the phone there and wouldn’t give her name or other details.
China’s central government last week ordered officials to help airlines and other battered industries. An official of the country’s tax agency said Monday that the government has ordered tax credits for SARS-affected businesses.
The city government said last week that despite the loss of tourism, Shanghai’s manufacturing and other industries were still strong and the city should record economic growth of at least 10 percent this year.
In Beijing, which has suffered 129 deaths, authorities have told cinemas, gymnasiums, discotheques and other entertainment sites to close, idling thousands of workers.
Shanghai has not ordered similar closures, but some businesses have shut down for lack of customers.
The Jinjiang Tower is to close next Monday for three months, said a receptionist there.
“We are a big facility but have no customers coming,” said the woman, who wouldn’t give her name. “Temporary closure is good for saving costs.”
So hope you get out of your house very soon – and enjoy the bright and warm spring. So you have a lot of time to surf on the net. Don’t worry though, at least you are very safe now.
Yoga started to become quite popular in HK last summer. Is it catching on in Shanghai yet? Has anyone tried hot room yoga yet?
About executing quarantine breaker…it really take places like China to make these kinds of laws — laws that are never meant to be enforeced (hopefully…) but work more as a deterrent against people breaking quarantine. :-)
Here is a news clipping on the law, and the story that might have triggered it.
China Threatens to Execute SARS Spreaders (16 May 2003)
Summary — China has threatened to execute or jail for life anyone who deliberately spreads the killer SARS virus. People who violate quarantines and spread the virus can be imprisoned for up to seven years, and those who cause death or serious injury by “deliberately spreading” the virus can be sentenced to prison terms of 10 years to life or could face execution.
Meanwhile, a doctor carrying SARS was detained for allegedly breaking quarantine and starting an outbreak that infected more than 100 people. Authorities in the northern Chinese city of Linha are preparing to charge Dr. Li Song with violating infectious disease law. Li was infected with SARS while attending a training program in Beijing, but returned to Linhe after receiving only basic treatment in the capital. Li infected family members and the virus eventually spread to 102 people, including 23 medical staff. Li escaped with his wife from their isolation ward quarantine quarters. The two were caught hours later wandering city streets and returned to hospital. After his father died of SARS, Li forbade workers to remove the body, attacked doctors and nurses and smashed hospital equipment.