The death count due to COVID-19 is constantly increasing in China which is defying the statements of Chinese officials, who are claiming to have controlled the recent outbreak. From January 8, China has opened its borders to foreign visitors after a stringent lockdown of over three years. While making this decision, Chinese officials claimed that they have managed to bring the recent COVID-19 outbreak under control. This decision came as a surprise for almost everyone because the hospitals in the country are still overstuffed and the coffin makers are still busy. The WHO has constantly been asking for ground-level data on current active cases and actual death counts from Chinese officials. But the officials have been refusing to provide any significant data to the organization, which has raised more questions regarding China’s practices surrounding the recent COVID-19 outbreak. Such shady practices have caused many countries such as the US, the UK, India, Japan, and many others, to put travel restrictions on Chinese visitors.
According to local reports, almost 80% of the Chinese population has been affected by the recent COVID outbreak. 80% of the total Chinese population means over a billion Chinese people have been infected by the coronavirus. This is the reason that the healthcare facilities in the country are struggling heavily to address the large influx of patients. Healthcare workers are working even after being infected by the virus. Many other services under healthcare such as general care and others have been shut off completely in many hospitals in cities to allow them to completely focus on the COVID patients. People who have mild symptoms or are asymptomatic have been advised to receive treatment at home to avoid crowding at the hospitals and pharmacies.
Along with the growing number of new cases, the country has so far reported over 60,000 deaths since the outbreak started in December. Almost 15,000 deaths have occurred just within the previous week. Many experts have said that these numbers must be far from the actual numbers because the maximum number of these deaths have occurred at the hospitals in cities. On the other hand, deaths in rural areas, where medical help is almost out of reach, have gone unnoticed. According to the coffin makers in many villages in China, the deaths related to COVID-19 have increased the demand for coffins. However, these deaths are not being addressed in the official counting of COVID-related deaths.
Older people are at the highest risk of death because of weakened immunity. People with an already existing illness are also at higher risk because of compromised immunity. This pattern is visible while accessing the deaths in the country. Because of this, this year’s Lunar year celebrations were in jeopardy because social gatherings were one of the primary reasons behind the recent outbreak. The concern was also because of the open borders of the country, which meant that there were going to be visitors and locals coming to the country from outside. It will be harder for China to manage the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak if it refuses to address the widespread infection.