Cluster of COVID-19 cases in Beijing

China // 03 July, 2020

International SOS is monitoring the situation closely.

Update 3 July: Two more cases have been confirmed, all from Fengtai District. The total number in this outbreak is now 331. Seven people have recovered and been discharged. A further 29 people have been identified as positive for COVID-19 but do not have symptoms.

Update 2 July: One confirmed case has been reported today, from Fengtai district. About half of all cases had worked or visited the beef and lamb section of the Xinfadi market. The quarantine period for people who had been in this part of the market has been extended from 14 to 28 days.

Update 1 July: A further 3 cases today, all from the Daxing district. There are now 328 cases in this cluster since 11 June, 2 have recovered so far.

Update 30 June: Seven more cases have been announced.

Update 29 June: Further cases have been identified as part of the Beijing cluster, located across 11 of the 16 districts. Since 11 June, there have been 318 locally confirmed cases reported, all of whom have been treated in hospital. A further 26 cases who have not shown symptoms are being monitored. The most recent cases have been identified in Changping, Daxing, Fengtai and Haidin districts in the last 4 days.

Update 23 June: Official sources reported 13 new cases of domestically-transmitted COVID-19. Efforts to test the population are continuing, with more than 2 million tests being performed between 12-21 June. The government is mandating nucleic acid testing for three groups of people: anyone who visited, or came into contact with staff from the Xinfadi market; employees in: restaurants, food delivery and logistics, canteens, and farm produce markets; people in high and medium risk locations including medical staff, transport workforce, and employees of banks and supermarkets. Business hours for some shopping malls in Fengtai and Daxing districts have also been changed.

Update 22 June: Another nine cases have been identified, in addtion to five more asymptomatic cases. The confirmed cases are from the districts of Chaoyang District (1), Fengtai (5), Haidian (2) and Xicheng (1). Analysis of the virus in this outbreak shows links to the strains in Europe, suggesting that the virus has been re-introduced to China from abroad.

Update 21 June: After a mass testing effort, a further 22 new cases of COVID-19, including one nurse, were detected on Sunday. Some communities have been sealed off in the city and residents have been told to avoid non-essential travel. Schools have closed. More than 220 individuals have tested positive in the new cluster.

Update 19 June: Official sources have reported 27 more “domestically transmitted” cases and nine deaths from the current outbreak. Of these two were asymptomatic. A cluster of eight employees from a restaurant near the Xinfadi market which has now been closed, is among the latest cases to be reported. Beijing has confirmed that 411 of the total cases have recovered and been discharged from hospital. Fifteen cases without symptoms remain under observation and 183 patients are still receiving medical treatment. Also reported were an additional 174 cases described as being imported, bringing the total number to 777.

Update 18 June: Chief epidemiologist for the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Wu Zunyou has stated the epidemic situation in Beijing is under control. Wu advised "Although Beijing has been reporting confirmed cases every day, this does not mean that all cases are newly infected." Wu also stated that 21 new cases reported on 18 June were "basically infected before 12 June." More cases are expected in the following days, though the number should decline.

The Beijing Municipal Health Commission reported that within the 21 new cases there are eight clusters related to the market. They provide details for one of those clusters - a chef from a restaurant had been to the market and developed symptoms on June 13. The other six employees at the restaurant, who also live together, had not been to the market however all have now tested positive.

Update 17 June: Thirty-one new locally acquired cases have been reported, with 3 new suspected and 6 asymptomatic cases. Nineteen of the new cases are in Fengtai district, with the remainder in the districts of Daxing, Dongchen, Haidian and Xicheng.

Update 16 June: The Beijing Municipal Health Commission has reported a further 27 locally acquired infections in Beijing, with three more asymptomatic cases detected. There are now 106 confirmed-cases in this cluster, with another 10 asymptomatic cases. It affects nine districts (Fengtai, Daxing, Haidian, Fangshan, Xicheng, Dongcheng, Chaoyang, Shijingshan and Mentougou. Beijing raised its COVID-19 emergency response from Level 3 to Level 2 today (see announcment in Chinese). The Level 2 restrictions will require people to have temperatures taken, register, and check health codes before entry into communities. Many public places such as libraries, parks, and museums will limit visitor traffic to no more than 30%, and implement time limited reservations. In-person classes at schools and universities have been suspended, and will be moved online.

Update 15 June: The Beijing Municipal Health Commission has reported a further 36 locally acquired cases were confirmed on 14 June. Thirty-four are linked to the Xinfadi Market (see announcement in Chinese).

Update 14 June: There are a total of 77 symptomatic cases confirmed and 46 who do not have symptoms. Two of the 77 are in Liaoning Province. All the cases are in isolation. Contact tracing is underway and extensive testing is being carried out. In addition to the closure of the Xinfadi Market, there are at least 5 other wholesle food markets in Beijing that have been closed.

Posted 13 June: Beijing has reported its first locally-acquired cases of COVID-19 in 55 days. The World Health Organization announced there are at least 41confirmed cases of COVID-19 who have had symptoms, and a further 46 who are asymptomatic, are associated with the Xinfadi Market in the Fengtai district of Beijing. The first known case in this cluster developed symptoms on 9 June, and was confirmed infected 2 days later. The 'fever clinics' in the city identified several of the cases in this cluster, prompting investigations which identified the link to the Xinfadi Market.

The Xinfadi Market, which provides a majority of the city's produce, has been closed and 40 samples of the environment (including cutting boards used for salmon) are positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus (the virus which causes COVID-19. Around 10,000 workers will be tested. Samples will be collected from anyone who had "close contact" with the market since 30 May. Two cases have also been reported in Liaoning province, both in people who had close contact with the Beijing cases.

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