>Makeshift hospitals to be closed
Makeshift hospitals built to treat novel coronavirus infected patients with mild symptoms in Wuhan, Hubei province, are expected to wrap up operation around March 10, China Central Television reported on Sunday.
Since Feb 5, 14 makeshift hospitals in the city have been operating, with the longest running for 33 days, and treating more than 12,000 cases, it said.
As of Sunday afternoon, 11 of the 14 hospitals have suspended operation, with their patients either discharged or transferred to designated hospitals, it said.
There are about 100 patients still being treated in the remaining three makeshift hospitals.
Zhai Xiaohui, deputy director of the hospital management center with the National Health Commission, said: "Nearly 10,000 beds have been emptied out at the designated hospitals. From now on confirmed cases will be sent to the designated hospitals first. If they cannot handle them, the makeshift hospitals will reopen."
>Gender pay gap narrows
The average monthly salary of women in urban China reached 6,995 yuan in 2019, up 7.7% year-on-year.
Though women continue to earn only 81.6% of the men's salary, it's the first time for the gender pay gap to shrink over the past three years, thanks to the growing number of well-paid female workers, a report showed.
With the increase in women's skills and aspirations, more females have risen up to management level, which has boosted their average salary, according to a report released by recruitment platform Boss Zhipin on Thursday.
Women held 25.4% of director-level posts last year, up 0.4 percentage points over 2018, the report showed.
The growth was more obvious in human resources, public relations and legal sectors.
Besides, with more women choosing to study majors such as science, technology, engineering and math, more female graduates have found jobs with high salaries.
However, more than 70% of employees in the top 15 most-paid technical positions were still men.
>Italy locks down northern regions
Italy has locked down the northern Lombardy region and 14 nearby provinces, including the financial capital Milan and tourist hotspot Venice, in an effort to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said Sunday.
According to a government decree that goes into effect until April 3, unprecedented restrictions will be taken as preventive measures, impacting some 16 million people in the north, which accounts for a quarter of the country's population.
Italy is dealing with the worst coronavirus epidemic outside of Asia.
Deaths rose to 366 with more than 130 reported Sunday, a 50% increase from the day before.
The number of cases in the country nearly tripled from about 2,500 infections on Wednesday to more than 7,375 on Sunday.
>NASA is hiring astronauts
NASA announced it is accepting public applications for aspiring astronauts.
It is the first time in more than four years that the agency has accepted any new applications for this truly epic job.
"America is closer than any other time in history since the Apollo program to returning astronauts to the moon," NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine shared in a statement. "We will send the first woman and next man to the lunar South Pole by 2024, and we need more astronauts to follow suit on the moon, and then Mars. If you have always dreamed of being an astronaut, apply now."
The agency will select the final round of astronaut candidates sometime in mid-2021. From there, the new recruits will begin their training.
In 2015, when the agency last sought astronaut candidates, more than 18,300 people applied. After all was said and done, just 11 astronauts were selected.
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