Key steps taken by Taiwan's CECC over past 100 days
Tuesday (April 28) marked the 100th day since Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) was activated and what follows is a look back at important dates and actions taken to fight off the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19):
On Dec. 31, Taiwan's Centers for Disease Control (CDC) contacted the WHO's International Health Regulation (IHR) focal point, as well as its Chinese counterparts, for confirmation that human-to-human transmission of COVID-19 was occurring. It never received a response.
Having learned a bitter lesson from SARS, which took hold in the early 2000s, the Taiwan government enhanced border control and quarantine measures, based on the assumption that such transmission was possible. It also began screening passengers arriving from the Chinese city of Wuhan before disembarkation that same day.
After China finally, quietly announced on Jan. 20 that human-to-human transmission of the disease was indeed occurring, Taiwan immediately activated the CECC. The sloth-like WHO did not warn the world about human-to-human transmission of the highly infectious disease until Jan. 24.
The following are critical dates and steps taken by the CECC during the outbreak compiled by CNA:
Jan. 20 CECC opens under the command of expert epidemiologist Chen Shih-chung (陳時中).
Jan. 21 Woman who had traveled from Wuhan confirmed to be first case and placed in isolation.
Jan. 23 Wuhan goes under lockdown. Travelers from Wuhan are banned, direct flights grounded.
Jan. 24 Export of medical masks is banned.
Jan. 31 CECC requisitions first batch of medical masks from domestic manufacturers.
Feb. 2 Lunar New Year holiday for schools below high school level postponed until Feb. 25.
Feb. 3 Holiday for two-thirds of colleges and universities postponed until Feb. 25.
Feb. 6 Travelers from China, Hong Kong, and Macau are banned.
Feb. 6 International cruise ships are banned.
Feb. 6 Real name mask rationing system 1.0 goes into effect.
Feb. 7 Foreigners who had traveled to China within the past 14 days banned.
Feb. 10 Ban imposed on all but five direct flights between China and Taiwan.
Feb. 16 First death from Wuhan coronavirus reported in Taiwan.
Feb. 27 All medical staff and social workers are prohibited from going abroad.
Feb. 29 First hospital cluster event breaks out in Taiwan.
March 12 Real name mask rationing system 2.0 goes into effect.
March 17 Teachers and students from high school and below are barred from going overseas.
March 18 Taiwan-U.S. joint statement announced on six areas of cooperation, including vaccine.
March 19 Taiwan bars all foreign nationals from entering the country.
March 19 First school cluster event announced, school closed down for two weeks.
March 24 Taiwan bans all airline passenger transits through the country.
April 1 CECC issues social distance guidelines.
April 2 Visitors barred from hospitals and senior care centers.
April 18 Cluster infection breaks out in the "Goodwill Fleet."
April 20 CECC creates Google map showing locations infected sailors visited.
April 29 Taiwan reports zero new cases for record fourth day in a row.