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China Daily / 2020-03 / 26 / Page012

CEA transports key medical workers, equipment to Wuhan

By Liang Kaiyan | China Daily | Updated: 2020-03-26 00:00

Fast, decisive action ensuring battle is won against virus

In the fight against the novel coronavirus, the nation has collectively pulled together to limit the spread and get much needed resources, and China Eastern Airlines has played its part in the country's massive response.

CEA has acted quickly and shouldered a large amount of responsibility in ensuring medical staff and supplies have been flown into Wuhan and all over Hubei province.

From 12:25 pm on Feb 9 to 7:30 am on Feb 10, 18 of the airline's craft transported medical teams and supplies from across the country including Shanghai; Qingdao, Shandong province; and Nanjing, Jiangsu province, to aid front-line hospitals in Wuhan.

They transported 2,150 medical workers and 109.1 metric tons of medical supplies in that time.

When CEA learned about the lockdown of Wuhan on Jan 23, the company's executives held a conference to discuss emergency measures for prevention and control in response to the policy and decision made by the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council.

As one of the transport companies flying people and supplies in and out of Wuhan, CEA has not only made efforts to ensure transport routes remain open, but also provided help on the ground by giving up its staff and crew accommodation for medical workers in Wuhan. It has provided a total of 310 rooms so far.

CEA staff that gave up their rooms are using folding beds in the company's offices for the time being.

To date, the airline has laid on 96 chartered flights in aid of the outbreak both at home and abroad, transporting 9,610 medical workers from places including Hubei province as well as repatriating 539 people from Hubei in countries such as Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam and Indonesia. Utilizing its global airline network and offices, CEA has coordinated with relevant departments and its overseas offices to transport nearly 3,000 tons of epidemic emergency materials domestically and from abroad, the company said.

Working with overseas Chinese, CEA and the Shanghai Committee of the China Democratic League transported 1 million pairs of medical latex gloves from New York to Shanghai on Feb 4.

Two weeks later, the airline donated another 2 million gloves to the Shanghai Health Commission.

"This is a national fight against the novel coronavirus. CEA has always been ready to carry out mission if necessary," said Tang Bing, deputy head of the team in charge of tackling COVID-19 at CEA.

Zhang Huaiqiong, deputy director of the Shanghai Health Commission, said the protective equipment not only helps ensure doctors can carry out regular treatment, but is also necessary for all the people involved in prevention and control work.

"We are honored to receive these donations and are grateful to CEA and the Shanghai Committee of the China Democratic League," Zhang said.

CEA staff have so far donated 3.45 million yuan ($488,010) in support of epidemic prevention and control. The company has also allocated 1 million yuan to help its staff in Wuhan.

Hundreds of Party members and company volunteers are helping to collect information, sterilize workplaces and offering care to staff in need. CEA is employing an assistance program to provide 24-hour psychological consultation for all staff members.

Apart from social efforts, the airline has attached great importance to passenger protection.

It has developed a cloud declaration system to collect passenger health information, which has been in use since early February.

The system ensures joint prevention and control with local bureaus via network platforms, and makes traveling more efficient for passengers as well as reducing the likelihood of the virus spread, according to the company.

Considering the novel coronavirus outbreak around the world, CEA is increasing its prevention and control measures on all major international routes.

The measures include temperature checks and declaration of information to health departments, the company said.


China Eastern Airlines flight attendants measure body temperatures of passengers on board. CHINA DAILY



Staff members wearing face masks conduct external disinfection before takeoff. CHINA DAILY



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