Mass testing ordered amid outbreak in Wuhan

Chinese leaders announced mass COVID-19 testing in Wuhan on Tuesday amid an outbreak driven by the delta variant in the city where the virus was first detected in December 2019, The Associated Press reported.

China also reportedly suspended flights and canceled professional baseball games in the country as the cases spread to more than 35 cities in 17 of its 33 provinces and regions, a far more widespread outbreak than during the start of the pandemic.

China initially curbed most COVID-19 cases with immediate home quarantines and lockdowns, preventing cases from spreading beyond a single province. 

Wuhan, a provincial capital with over 11 million residents, is the latest Chinese city to undergo mass testing.

Currently, most of the cases are still in Jiangsu province, the AP noted, adding that the outbreak started in an airport in the provincial capital and spread to other provinces. The outbreak was later traced to the delta variant.  

While scientists in China said the Chinese vaccines are less effective against the variant, they still offer some protection. Only those vaccines are currently being administered in China, where 1.6 billion doses have been given, according to the AP. 

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