Enlarge /. BEIJING, CHINA – JUNE 15: A Chinese disease control worker does a nucleic acid test for COVID-19 on a man who was in contact with the Xinfadi wholesale market. Authorities are trying to contain the outbreak related to Xinfadi, Beijing's largest supplier of products and meat, as a food wholesaler. Several neighborhoods have been closed, and at least two other grocery stores have been closed as tens of thousands of people are asked to test for COVID-19 in locations across the city.
View more stories
Authorities in Beijing have blocked parts of the city, reintroduced some restrictions, and are testing tens of thousands of residents amid a flood of new SARS CoV-2 infections.
The authorities reported 79 cases within four days by Monday. Almost all cases relate to the Xinfadi food market, the largest meat and vegetable wholesale market in the city. The market has an astonishingly large number of customers, and experts fear that many more cases will have to be identified, each of which could trigger additional outbreaks.
Beijing had more than 50 days previously without locally acquired cases of COVID-19.
In a press conference on Monday, experts from the World Health Organization said the outbreak was significant.
"If you've spent more than 50 days in China with no significant local broadcast, a cluster like this is a problem that needs to be investigated and controlled," said Michael Ryan, Executive Director of WHO. "And that's exactly what the Chinese authorities are doing."
On the weekend, when the outbreak in Beijing became clear, the local authorities closed and closed the market, closed off some nearby quarters, started extensive tests and prohibited large gatherings.
With the rapid action, Zeng Guang, a senior epidemiologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, was quoted in the Beijing Daily as saying, "Beijing will not be a second Wuhan." He urged residents not to be nervous and to "follow the government's order to trust disease control personnel and doctors."
WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted the outbreak in his opening speech at today's press conference, adding: "Even in countries that have demonstrated the ability to suppress the transmission, countries need to be aware of the possibility of resurgence."
Meanwhile, health professionals in the United States are warning of the possibility of a similar reinstatement of restrictions and locks. Cases are increasing in 22 states and many of the increases are not due to increased testing. Still, many Americans seem to shrug their shoulders with socially distant recommendations and precautions.
New York governor Andrew M. Cuomo warned on Sunday that the state could suspend the reopening plans after receiving around 25,000 complaints about companies violating socially distant measures. According to CBS News, Houston is also considering reintroducing bans in some cases after a resuscitation.