China orders mass testing in Wuhan as COVID outbreak spreads
China suspended flights and trains, canceled professional basketball league games and announced mass coronavirus testing in Wuhan, as widening outbreaks of the delta variant reached the city where the disease was first detected in late 2019.
While the total number of cases is still in the hundreds, they are far more widespread than anything China has dealt with since the initial outbreak that devastated Wuhan in early 2020, and over time spread to the rest of the country and the world.
China has not eliminated but largely curbed COVID-19 at home with quick lockdowns and mass testing to isolate infected people whenever new cases pop up. Most previous outbreaks didn't spread far beyond a city or province. This time, cases have been confirmed in more than 35 cities in 17 of mainland China's 31 provinces and regions.
The cities of Nanjing and Yangzhou have canceled all domestic flights, and Beijing has halted long-distance trains from 23 stations. The Chinese Basketball Association said that matches of its men's professional league would be suspended because of the pandemic.
Wuhan, a provincial capital of 11 million people in central China, is the latest city to undergo city-wide testing. Three cases were confirmed there on Monday, its first non-imported cases in more than a year.