69 family clusters found in Tianjin; Omicron epidemic basically under control: authorities
Published: Jan 18, 2022 09:58 AM
Residents take nucleic acid tests in Tianjin on January 9, 2022. Photo: VCG

Residents take nucleic acid tests in Tianjin on January 9, 2022. Photo: VCG

A total of 69 family clusters of COVID-19 have been found amid this round of local epidemic in North China's Tianjin Municipality, and the epidemic is under control basically, but the situation is still severe and complex, the local authorities said at Tuesday's press briefing. 

The number of infections has dropped significantly after preventive measures were taken including centralized quarantine of close contacts, restrictions on the movement of people, and suspension of gathering activities, a Tianjin official said on Tuesday.

Tianjin reported 18 new local cases on Monday. From January 8 to Monday, a total of 312 locally confirmed COVID-19 cases were reported, according to the local authorities on Tuesday.

Chinese Vice Premier Sun Chunlan conducted an inspection tour from January 12 to Monday in Omicron-hit Tianjin in North China, and urged local officials to adopt effective measures and quick response to the epidemic. 

As the Chinese Spring Festival approaches, special teams for epidemic prevention and control in all regions should strengthen duty in response to emergency and adopt efficient operation to respond quickly to block the epidemic in time, Sun pointed out, noting that it's important to expand the scope of screening for people at risk in key industries, strengthen the management of quarantine sites, designated hospitals, ports and airports to identify and remove potential risks.  

The outbreak is the first local cluster epidemic triggered by the Omicron strain in Chinese mainland, Sun said. Tianjin has so far effectively controlled the outbreak within the region, and contained the spread and spillover of the epidemic.

The outbreak is concentrated in the city's Jinnan district, where 94 percent of patients citywide were located. Sun has urged decisive measures including door-to-door checking, improved service management at quarantine points and blocking community transmission. 

Sun inspected nucleic acid sampling sites, laboratories and big data centers several times, and pushed forward the work of city-wide screening to ensure timely epidemiological investigation and the close contacts and secondary contacts to be controlled in the first place.

There are many and scattered quarantine sites in Tianjin, therefore, the management of quarantine sites should be strictly strengthened to prevent cross-infection. Sun visited Tianjin Haihe Hospital to discuss with frontline experts, promote the implementation of the hospital management system in order to avoid deaths due to COVID-19. 

Tianjin is in sufficient supply of daily necessities and the city has been making efforts to ensure residents' daily life and medical needs.