As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to rage, many countries are scrambling to slow down the number of infections, except Taiwan. The self-ruled island has gained the upper hand in the war against the virus and foreign media have taken notice of Taiwan’s virus-prevention efforts.
Following an article from CNN praising women leaders across the world earlier this week, the global media again mentioned Taiwan in an analysis explaining how 4 governments succeeded in flattening the curve alongside Iceland, South Korea and Germany.
The CNN report lists four reasons behind Taiwan’s current success: preparedness, fast reaction, testing capacity, tracing and quarantine of potential contacts using big data and tech.
After the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak, CNN points out that Taiwan rightly established the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC). The center was swiftly activated on Jan. 20 after Taiwan received news of the novel coronavirus. In just three weeks, more than 120 virus-prevention actions were put into place.
Taiwan was also quick in screening passengers who arrived at the airport for fever or pneumonia-related symptoms.
Before the confirmation of COVID-19’s people-to-people transmission was made by the World Health Organization (WHO), Taiwan had already issued travel restrictions to Wuhan and the CECC began holding press conferences every day to keep the public up-to-date.
CNN also praised Taiwan for widespread testing and requesting self-quarantine for those who may have contracted the virus or been in contact with them.
The article further pointed out that Taiwan even went as far as retesting people to make sure they weren’t misdiagnosed.
Last but not least, Taiwan’s National Health Insurance (NHI) was commended for using big data among other strategies, allowing Taiwan authorities to issue timely alerts to ensure public’s safety.