PUBLISHED : Monday, 21 April, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 21 April, 2003, 12:00am

The following measures have been announced by the central government in response to the Sars outbreak: 1) The week-long Labour Day holiday is cut back. 2) An investigation and supervision taskforce similar to those already in place in Beijing and Guangdong will also be established in Ningxia. 3) A system will be created to help pay medical costs for those who cannot afford treatment. The system will be financed by both central and provincial governments. 4) Hospitals cannot reject any suspected Sars patients for any reason. 5) Co-operation with the WHO is to be strengthened. WHO experts will visit Shanghai today and will later go to western provinces where hospitals are less well-developed. 6) Suggestions from WHO experts on the treatment and tracking of cases will be studied. 7) All well-equipped hospitals will set up special consultation wards to receive respiratory disease patients. 8) The number of Sars cases will be announced daily instead of once every five days. 9) Medical staff treating Sars patients will now receive an extra allowance.