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The US has a lot to learn from Taiwan’s Covid fight with only 5 died by Lanhee Chen

How Taiwan Contained COVID-19: Early Action, Technology & Millions of Face Masks

Taiwan, despite being just 100 miles from mainland China with regular flights to and from Wuhan, has successfully staved off the worst of the coronavirus pandemic. The country has so far seen five deaths and just under 350 confirmed cases, and most schools and businesses remain open. How did Taiwan do it? “Aggressive action,” says Dr. Jason Wang, the former project manager for Taiwan’s National Health Insurance Reform Task-force. He is now the director of the Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention and associate professor of pediatrics and medicine at Stanford University. He speaks with us about Taiwan’s strategy and what the world can learn from it.


Editor’s Note: Lanhee J. Chen, Ph.D., is the David and Diane Steffy Fellow in American Public Policy Studies at the Hoover Institution. He has also spoken at events convened by The Project on Taiwan in the Indo-Pacific at the Hoover Institution, which is supported by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office. Chen is an affiliated faculty member of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University. The views expressed in this commentary belong to the author. View more opinions at CNN.

(CNN)Public health professionals around the world have lauded Taiwan’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. Along with nearby countries such as South Korea and Singapore, Taiwan has employed policy responses to Covid-19 that are worthy of emulation around the world. Taiwan, in particular, effectively contained Covid-19 by springing to action early, coordinating a government-wide response to the virus, and clearly communicating with its citizenry.

A society of about 24 million people, Taiwan has had only 449 confirmed cases of Covid-19 — and seven deaths. These numbers are remarkable given that Taiwan is less than 100 miles off the coast of mainland China, where the outbreak initially began. The two sides maintain strong commercial and cultural ties, though relations have grown frosty since the election of Taiwan’s current president in 2016.Taiwan has exported both its expertise and its medical supplies around the world. For world leaders looking to emulate Taiwan’s strategy, four factors are key to understanding why it has been successful in the fight against Covid-19.First, the geopolitical fight between Taiwan and the mainland, officially the People’s Republic of China (PRC), which considers the self-governing island a part of its territory, has fueled Taiwanese skepticism of Beijing’s claims. Thus, when news of a novel coronavirus in Wuhan initially broke in December 2019, Taiwan did not rely on official Chinese pronouncements that the virus could be controlled and that it could not be transmitted between humans. Instead, it immediately started screening passengers on inbound flights from Wuhan, and moved quickly to identify and isolate any travelers who exhibited symptoms of Covid-19. Second, Taiwan has had significant experience dealing with respiratory disease outbreaks and learned the lessons in pandemic preparedness and response from them. In particular, it was hit hard by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003 and responded effectively to the H1N1 flu in 2009. Because of Taiwan’s experience, authorities there understood the importance of responding to the disease quickly, ensuring the availability of personal protective equipment like masks and putting in place protocols to identify cases of the virus and prevent community spread. To read more go to the link below:

https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/10/opinions/taiwan-covid-19-lesson-united-states-chen/index.html

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