According to the National Health Commission, approximately 24,791 new coronavirus cases were recorded in China today of which 20,895 were asymptomatic and 3,896 were symptomatic.
China reported 24,268 additional cases a day earlier, with 3,486 symptomatic infections and 20,782 asymptomatic infections being classified separately in addition to the overall total.
China’s continued “dynamic clearing” strategy to eliminate the highly transmissible Omicron COVID-19 strain has resulted in a record number of symptomatic COVID-19 cases in Shanghai, while other sections of the country have imposed restrictions as a result.
The Measures Being Taken
Another 14-day lockdown was imposed on Friday in the Zhengzhou Airport Economic Zone, an important manufacturing area in central China that includes Apple Inc. supplier Foxconn.
The lockdown was to be “modified in accordance with the pandemic scenario.”
Following a spike in COVID-19 illnesses this month, the city of Xian in northwest China issued a warning to residents on Friday to avoid needless travel outside their residential compounds and urged enterprises to allow employees to work from home or live on-site as a result of the warning.
In response to citizens’ fears about potential food shortages, a Xian government official stated on Saturday that the city would not enforce a lockdown.
According to a statement by the city of Suzhou, which is located near Shanghai, all employees who are capable of working from home should do so, and residential compounds and company campuses should be kept free of unnecessary people and vehicles.
“Special vehicles” will be permitted to drive as usual for work purposes, but only those with valid passes, health codes, and proof of negative COVID testing will be permitted to leave the Zhengzhou economic zone, according to economic zone authorities.
Since March, mainland China has been combating the virus’s deadliest outbreak since it first emerged in late 2019 in the central city of Wuhan, the country’s largest city.
China’s “dynamic clearing” policy, which aims to ensure that no infection goes undetected by interrupting supply lines and local economies through punitive measures, has been put under strain by the latest wave, despite the fact that the numbers are still low by international “reported” standards.
Chinese President Xi Jinping stated that virus control and prevention measures should not be slowed down and that China would seek to minimize the policy’s impact on economic and social development. Depending on the duration of these measures, they will help better and maintain the country’s situation.
As The Numbers Increase
Shanghai, the epicenter of China’s latest outbreak, reported a record 3,590 symptomatic cases and 19,923 asymptomatic cases on Saturday. The number of symptomatic cases has increased 350% in the last one week, raising concern of the virus’ virulence.
Dozens of elderly patients at a hospital in Shanghai have died after contracting Covid-19, but official government figures claim no deaths in the city have been caused by the disease since 2020.
The city’s COVID case count accounts for 95% of instances nationwide, despite the fact that the majority of its 25 million citizens remain under lockdown.
Xian, which was evacuated in December to combat a Delta variant epidemic, discovered 43 locally transmitted diseases during the current Omicron flare-up. The city replied by imposing restrictions on citizens’ movement from last Saturday through Tuesday but refrained from imposing a complete lockdown.
But as the numbers increase, it seems like the other cities will soon have to take further precautions in order to ensure the safety of the people, economy, and relations.
The city will prohibit dining at restaurants, several recreational and cultural facilities, and some face-to-face school sessions between April 16 and April 19. Taxis and ride-hailing vehicles would also be prohibited from leaving the city, according to the statement.
The lasting and expanding limitations underscore widespread supply chain issues, which are expected to result in shipment delays from businesses such as Apple.
Additionally, Economists believe the restrictions will have a negative impact on the country’s economic growth rate this year.
China’s Central Bank also cut the amount of cash that banks must hold as reserves on Friday evening, attempting to soften the impact of a steep slowdown in growth.
And The CDC Blunders Again?
According to an announcement made earlier today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), no Covid test would be required for US nationals, permanent residents, and families flying from Shanghai to the United States until May 11, 2022.
Ironically, the U.S, does require all travelers to provide a negative COVID test result upon returning from vacation. So, it’s troubling, that the CDC gave special guidance and relaxed measures, at at time, when Shanghai strengthened measures to contain their outbreak. This will likely affect the already confused reputation of the current leadership of the CDC. Just last week, the CDC extended a travel mask mandate for two weeks amid spread of BA.2 Covid variant.
Many believe when governments make such obvious mistakes, they are allowing a preventable disease such as COVID to spread amongst millions in order to please libertarian aspirations. The elderly, the disabled, and the immune-compromised portions of the population end up becoming the victims.
This will end up backfiring inevitability since problems do not resolve themselves by simply brushing them aside, and because China is one of the world’s most populous countries, the outbreak will have a devastating effect if it is allowed to spread further.
China’s response to this epidemic and crisis is still in its early phases, with no clear indication of what the government will do next or how it will achieve its objectives. Historically, it has been recognized that a Covid-lockdown policy is only a temporary answer while the government searches for better alternatives that are now unavailable.
As we wait and see what Beijing does next, we should also not become blinded by our own ignorance, so much so, that we stop testing for the virus when it approaches our front door.