Figures released by China on Monday suggest that the tide of the coronavirus epidemic in the nation may be turning.

There are now more patients who have recovered from the illness than there are people who are still infected there.

According to China Global TV Network, as of Monday, there are at least 44,500 people who have recovered from the virus. By comparieson, there about 35,400 existing cases in the county where COVID-19 first appeared.

It’s a promising sign for China’s fight against the disease that emerged there in December, but comes as cases explode in the US, Italy, South Korea and Iran.

In Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, the first of 16 hospitals built specifically to handle the swell of coronavirus patients has closed after discharging its last 34 recovered patients, according to state broadcaster CCTV.

Cases in the Hubei province, where th virus fiorst emergedf in the city of Wuhan, have slowly declined with just 196 new infections reported on Sunday.

This is the first time that the province has reported fewer than 200 in a day since January, China’s National Health Commission said.

‘The rapid rising trend of virus cases in Wuhan has been controlled,’ Mi Feng, a spokesman for the National Health Commission, said at a briefing.

‘Outbreaks in Hubei outside of Wuhan are curbed and provinces outside of Hubei are showing a positive trend.’

Chen Yixin, the Communist Party chief in Wuhan, praised the government’s efforts to control the spread of the virus such as canceling Luna New Year celebrations and banning planes and trains from entering and leaving the city.

According to Reuters, the Communist Party’s Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission says it expects cases in China to soon fall below 100 per day.

In another sign that the country is slowly returning to normal, 18 provinces across China lowered their coronavirus emergency response level over the last week from level I, which is the most serious, to either level II or level III, which are less serious.

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