1 COVID-19 Case in Haikou Under Review Sparks Concerns for Sanya

By Vanessa Jencks, June 21, 2021

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Hainan Channel People’s Daily reported today that after receiving key data on June 19 about individuals connected to travel through Shenzhen airport, Hainan’s Provincial Epidemic Prevention and Control Headquarters took test samples in key areas of Haikou, including Xiuying District. 

On the evening of June 20, a person, surnamed Deng, living in Baoyuan Garden Community tested positive for COVID-19. The community has been locked down, and Deng has been transferred to a medical institution for isolation.

As of 7am on June 21, the second nucleic acid test was negative, and the physical condition of the person is normal. The medical staff will take samples again in 24 hours and release the results to the public as required by the Epidemic Prevention and Control Plan.

Additionally, the community and government are working closely together to assure all residents and close contacts are being tested and kept under review as well as ensuring that daily necessities are accessible to residents in lockdown.

Though Haikou and Sanya are on opposite sides of Hainan island, the case is under watch by industry leaders, residents and travelers alike. The developing COVID-19 situation in Guangzhou proves that pandemic control can change suddenly and drastically.

Vasu Sahu, who visited Haikou during the New Year and will return to Hainan this summer to visit Sanya, is unsure what to make of the latest COVID-19 update on the island.

“I just don’t want to be quarantined. That’s all I need. I have to come back to Hefei in a week after being in Sanya. If they don’t allow me to come back, I will postpone the trip.”

Another traveler to Sanya, Musa Niasi, will bring his wife and four-year-old son for a three-week stay. “I will have to keep an eye on the situation as I don’t want to be trapped in Sanya.”

Though these concerns are natural for expats in China, Susie Hetherington brought a dose of reasonability as her perspective.

“As a foreigner living in China, I feel the worst of the pandemic has passed and we continue to practice safe measurements. I don’t live in fear and I will take the chance to travel throughout China that is open for tourism. In addition, I live in China and follow any government regulations that are in place. If there were a concern with cases such as Guangzhou then I would not travel to that area.”

Hetherington is based in Beijing and intends to send her young adult daughter to Sanya to celebrate her birthday.

"I’m thrilled that my daughter has an opportunity to travel with her friend to enjoy celebrating her birthday. China is a safe country compared to North America.”

hainan-sanya-staff-hotel.jpgImage via Hainan Daily

Hotel staff in Sanya are keeping a close watch on the situation – all hotels we reached out to declined to comment. It should be noted that even prior to this case in Haikou, most hotels in Sanya have not relaxed their pandemic control prevention regulations, requiring staff to continue to wear masks and guests to present health codes upon entry to the hotel.

Despite silence from Sanya’s tourism industry, Hainan-based WeChat groups have, on the other hand, been full of comments. Sanya and Haikou residents have both been posting the most recent official news releases, keeping abreast of the facts and actively squashing rumors.

READ MORE: Here's Why China Still Can’t Open Its Borders

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[Cover image via China News]

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