Governments around the world have always struggled to stop the spread of disease, from the deadly swine flu which struck the globe in 2009, to ongoing attempts to rein in Ebola in West Africa.
No health authority has ever tackled the challenge currently faced by China, however, as the country grapples with a new coronavirus just as hundreds of millions prepare to travel during the Lunar New Year period -- the largest annual human migration on Earth.
During the Lunar holiday, people from across the country will cram themselves into homebound trains, buses and planes for family reunions. Others will take advantage of the time off to holiday overseas. Last year, close to 7 million Chinese tourists traveled abroad for Lunar New Year, according to state media.