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Epidemic peak may come in a week or 10 days: Expert

By Cui Jia | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-01-28 19:50
A patient undergoes blood test at Tongji hospital in Wuhan, Central China's Hubei province. [Photo by Tao Jidong/chinadaily.com.cn]

It's hard to predict when the epidemic will reach its peak, but it may come in a week or 10 days, said Zhong Nanshan, a member of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and a prominent expert in respiratory diseases. After that, the number of people infected by the novel coronavirus will not increase massively, he told Xinhua News Agency.

There have been reports that early symptoms of the novel coronavirus disease don't include common symptoms of respiratory diseases, such as fever and cough. Zhong said having a fever is still among the most common symptoms of novel coronavirus disease.

Ten to 14 days is a perfect window for observation. After the incubation period, those who haven't been infected will stay healthy and those who have been infected will receive medical treatment. So people's migration after Spring Festival holiday won't cause a massive spread of the disease, but control measures must continue, he added.

Zhong also said so far there is no targeted drug for the novel coronavirus disease, but scientist and medical experts have thought of some ways to fight it. "With the help of life supporting technologies, the fatality rate will definitely drop," he said.

Zhong stressed that the most effective way to control the epidemic is early identification and quarantine of those infected.

"I urged people to stay put before the Spring Festival holiday. I still believe people shouldn't travel, especially those who are from Wuhan. It's not only a personal choice, but also something that matters to society."

He said with the support of people around the country, Wuhan can surely get through the epidemic.

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