China Speed: Construction of 2nd makeshift COVID-19 hospital in Sanya completed in 5 days
Cao Chufeng

A second makeshift hospital that can accommodate 2,000 patients is ready to be put in use on Thursday in Sanya, the capital of south China's Hainan Province, which is currently experiencing a new round of the COVID-19 outbreak. It only took the construction team just five days to finish the project.

To achieve this, over 400 construction workers from all over the country worked on it since Saturday, August 6. They took rotating shifts and worked nonstop. Their job was not without hurdles.

"The most important thing we have to deal with is the organization of materials and manpower because we are in the midst of a pandemic, and most of our materials are transported from outside the island. This involves crossing the sea and passing traffic checkpoints, which is quite difficult to coordinate," said Xue Shan, the general manager of Sanya Haitangwan Development and Construction Co., Ltd.

To ease the burden of getting materials, Sanya municipal government officials coordinated to obtain materials from other construction projects throughout the city, and experienced construction teams also joined the mission. 

"It took us seven days and nights to finish the first makeshift hospital in Sanya. We learned from that project and improved the quality and efficiency of making the second one," said Wang Wei, the chief engineer of this second makeshift hospital project.

Another task that requires speed in Sanya is medical waste management. More than 400,000 PCR tests are being conducted daily, creating a great deal of medical waste. Workers at professional sanitation companies work for 12 hours every day to dispose of it properly. 

"We clean up 12 PCR mass testing sites every day. We also take care of household waste in nine containment areas and collect PCR test waste from individual households," said Fu Shaoju, the leader of Jiyang Team Three from Ming Jia Group.

Contamination with coronavirus is a risk during such work, and extra safety measures are employed.  

"Our staff are required to take PCR tests every day and change new protective gear every day," said Zhu Guoqiang, the director of the Production Management Center from Ming Jia Group.  

All medical waste is boxed and wrapped up before being incinerated, which must take place within one day of being collected.  

Chinese health authorities say they have so far deployed more than 10,000 personnel from 19 different regions and provinces to support Hainan. Hainan provincial authorities say they will try their best to cut the transmission chain between identified cases and the rest of the public by Friday.

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