The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in mainland China since the outbreak first started in the city of Wuhan in late 2019 now stands at 87,278 cases, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,634.
Authorities in Shijiazhuang, Hebei’s capital, where most of the new cases are located, have launched mass testing drives and banned gatherings to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
Travellers must present a negative nucleic acid COVID-19 test result taken within 72 hours before boarding a train or an airplane in the province.
In the city of Dalian in Liaoning province, which has reported local infections in recent days, residents in medium or high-risk areas have been barred from leaving the city. Residents in other areas were told to refrain from unnecessary trips out of Dalian.
Authorities in Guangdong province late on Wednesday reported a patient infected with a more transmissible variant of the coronavirus discovered in South Africa.
Some scientists worry that COVID-19 vaccines currently being rolled out may not be able to protect against this variant because of certain mutations that have been observed.
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