Wednesday, May 29, 2024
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As China stops publishing daily Covid figures amid reports of explosion in cases, a Chinese health official has made a shocking admission that every day 500,000 people in the eastern city of Qingdao are infected with the coronavirus. This number is in stark contrast to the official figures released by China, which reported zero deaths and only a few hundred cases for the fourth day in a row. The municipal health chief in Qingdao, Bo Tao, stated that the coastal city of about 10 million people was experiencing “between 490,000 and 530,000” new cases daily, and was “in a period of rapid transmission ahead of an approaching peak,” predicting that the infection rate would increase by another 10% over the weekend.

However, this report has seemingly been changed or removed by Saturday morning, with official statistics from Shandong, the province where Qingdao is located, only reporting 31 new domestic cases. This highlights the fact that official statistics are no longer a reliable source of coronavirus data in China, as the country has stopped mass testing and abandoned its zero-Covid policy. This policy reversal has also led to the elimination of snap lockdowns, lengthy quarantines, and travel restrictions.

The rising infection rates have caused pharmacy shelves to be emptied and hospital wards to become full, with reports suggesting that crematoriums and funeral homes are also experiencing backlogs as cities across the country struggle to keep up. However, the lack of stringent testing requirements has made it almost impossible to track case numbers, and authorities have narrowed the definition of a Covid death, a move that experts believe will reduce the number of fatalities linked to the virus. It is worth noting that the Chinese government maintains strict control over the nation’s media, with online censors on hand to remove any material deemed to be politically sensitive.

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