China has issued new guidelines for virus prevention as the country moves from an emergency to a normalized response to the COVID-19 outbreak, despite a slight spike in cases. The new regulations, released via the State Council’s website on Friday, outline changes in the rules for the opening of public places and the use of QR code health tracking systems. On Sunday, 17 new COVID-19 cases were reported in mainland China, seven of which were apparently imported from Inner Mongolia.
In a bid to return to the previous economic and social order, Beijing has announced that key public places, including cinemas, museums, tourist spots and libraries, can now reopen via a registration system that limits the number of visitors.
In response, the National Library of China in Beijing is today reopening for the first time since the outbreak. Only 1200 people per day will be allowed to enter and all must be wearing a mask and submit to a temperature check. Anyone with a temperature above 37.3 degrees centigrade will be refused admission.
Meanwhile, supermarkets, hotels, restaurants and malls are all cleared to open to the public as normal again as long as proper epidemic prevention and control measures are followed, the guidelines confirm.
The release also called on the public to observe proper hygiene practices in their personal lives, such as washing hands frequently, maintaining a distance from others and using serving chopsticks when sharing food. It clarified that masks should be worn if a distance of one meter cannot be kept between people.
While some cities, such as Beijing and Shanghai, have relaxed their mask guidelines in recent days, medical professionals, those visiting doctors and anyone in a public-facing role should still be wearing masks.
The mobile phone QR health codes we’ve all become so used to should be integrated with testing methods, according to the announcement. The results of antibody and nucleic tests may now be shared through these systems in certain cases.
Under the new guidelines, prevention measures in schools have been intensified. School employees and students should report their health on a daily basis, with anyone absent because of illness required to specify their diagnosis. Classrooms should continue to be disinfected and proper hygiene practices should be followed.
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Keywords: China issues new COVID guidelines
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