With an elevated capability for science-based and targeted epidemic response, localities across China have been making sustained efforts to optimize their COVID-19 prevention and control measures in a range of areas.
Aligned with their local anti-epidemic situations, these measures include fine-tuned protocols for nucleic acid testing, people's access to medical, pharmaceutical services and public transport, as well as entry to public facilities.
For instance, negative nucleic acid test results are no longer required for people to access public transport or enter certain public venues in cities, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Zhengzhou, Hangzhou and Urumqi.
Local authorities in localities including Zhengzhou and Shenzhen have specified that while negative nucleic acid test results within 48 hours are not essential for entry into certain public areas, they are still required when people visit enclosed venues, such as karaoke booths and internet cafes.
Starting from Tuesday, people in Beijing can enter certain public venues including supermarkets and commercial buildings by scanning valid health codes, and negative nucleic acid test results are no longer mandatory.
In Shandong Province, residents no longer need to present their health codes and negative nucleic acid tests when entering public places, such as parks and scenic spots, or taking public transport, such as subways, buses and taxis.
Jiangxi Province has issued a similar notice, stating that people no longer need nucleic acid test results or health codes to take intra-city public transit or enter certain public areas, including residential communities, parks, shopping malls, supermarkets and hotels.
Local authorities have also better calibrated their nucleic acid testing protocols.
For example, with convenient testing services still available for those in need, cities like Hangzhou, Ningbo, Wenzhou, Taizhou and Lishui in Zhejiang Province no longer carry out routine nucleic acid testing.
Urumqi has also scrapped routine nucleic acid testing for local residents, except for residents in high-risk areas and workers in high-risk closed-loop operations, who still need to undergo nucleic acid testing as required.
Shanghai announced Monday that it will retain normal nucleic acid testing sampling sites in the city, continue to provide free testing services, and will no longer assign yellow codes to those without nucleic acid testing records within seven days.
In addition, localities have also optimized protocols regarding people's prescription drug purchases and access to medical treatment.
Local authorities in Zhengzhou have stipulated that medical institutions should not refuse treatment or delay treatment for critically ill patients due to lack of nucleic acid results, and they can conduct antigen and nucleic acid tests during emergency treatment. When receiving patients under three years old, medical institutions only have to check valid nucleic acid test results from accompanying people.
In cities, such as Zhengzhou, Urumqi, Hangzhou and Shenyang, and provinces, such as Shandong and Jiangxi, people no longer need to provide negative nucleic acid test results or real-name registration information when procuring fever, cough, antiviral and antibiotic drugs via digital platforms or brick-and-mortar medical institutions and pharmacies.