The central Chinese city where the novel coronavirus first appeared in December reported no new confirmed cases of the disease over a 24-hour period, signaling that the outbreak can be mitigated with strict measures in place.
The Health Commission of Hubei Province, which includes Wuhan, China, said there were zero new confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday. The agency did report eight new deaths in the province, however.
The figure represented a milestone in the fight to stymie the spread of the virus, which has infected more than 200,000 people around the world, and hit nations such as China, Italy and Iran especially hard. The Hubei province had reported 67,800 cases as of Wednesday.
In the early stages of the outbreak, China had experienced thousands of new confirmed cases every day, leading to a series of harsh measures, including the suspension of all travel to and from the Hubei province. China also restricted people from leaving their homes in Hubei as part of its efforts.
The country's National Health Commission on Thursday said that it had recorded just 34 new cases from the previous 24-hour period, all of which were imported from abroad.
“Today, we have seen the dawn after so many days of hard effort,” Jiao Yahui, a senior inspector at the National Health Commission, said, according to The Associated Press.
The encouraging statistics arrived as confirmed cases continued to surge in countries like Italy and as President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer Sen. Heller to run for Nevada governor Overnight Defense & National Security — Milley becomes lightning rod Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley becomes lightning rod on right MORE invoked emergency powers to address the pandemic in the U.S.
Italy reported 475 deaths from the virus on Wednesday alone, bringing its total death tally to 2,978 deaths. China has reported 3,249 deaths since the disease started spreading in the country, indicating that Italy may surpass the country in fatalities this week.
The U.S. had confirmed 9,415 cases of the virus as of Thursday morning, with a majority of the cases reported in New York.