BEIJING, Feb. 2 (Xinhua) -- Chinese authorities on Sunday stressed providing greater medical supplies support to central China's Hubei Province, particularly the key regions -- the city of Wuhan and its surrounding areas -- to help curb the epidemic caused by the novel coronavirus.
Authorities in some provinces were urged to flexibly arrange their work for the epidemic battle and step up efforts to prevent and control the novel coronavirus outbreak and ensure market supply, said an official statement issued after a Sunday meeting of the leading group of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee on the prevention and control of the novel coronavirus outbreak.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, who is a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and also head of the leading group of the CPC Central Committee on the prevention and control of the novel coronavirus outbreak, presided over the meeting.
Noting that great manpower and material resources support from all aspects has been delivered to Hubei in China's response to the novel coronavirus outbreak, the statement said that "the shortage of medical resources is still a prominent issue in Hubei."
The meeting underscored efforts to speed up the construction of hospitals to provide more beds, step up medical personnel support and organize more quality medical personnel in respiratory, intensive care and nursing fields from other provinces to support Hubei.
Authorities stressed accelerating production resumption by manufacturers of medical supplies and protective items, with a priority to meeting the needs of Wuhan and other key areas in Hubei, and quickening efforts to make up for the shortage of key items such as medical face masks and protective clothing in Hubei, according to the statement.
The State Council has agreed that to help curb the outbreak in some provinces, while arrangements are made to ensure the timely return of workers to key posts, enterprises and projects that are of high importance to the virus battle, public services, national economy and people's wellbeing, flexible ways can be adopted to arrange people's work in other sectors, the statement said.
The measure will help reduce the risk of virus spread by avoiding large-scale population movement after the Spring Festival holiday ends, it added.
The meeting also stressed efforts from local authorities to ensure a stable supply of epidemic prevention and control materials and daily necessities.
Wang Huning, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and deputy head of the leading group, attended the meeting.