Background: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak originating in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, coincided with chunyun, the period of mass migration for the annual Spring Festival. To contain its spread, China adopted unprecedented nationwide interventions on January 23 2020. These policies included large-scale quarantine, strict controls on travel and extensive monitoring of suspected cases. However, it is unknown whether these policies have had an impact on the epidemic. We sought to show how these control measures impacted the containment of the epidemic.