The Chinese authorities admit it, “it is impossible” to trace the contagion of the coronavirus. And while in Beijing there is a real boom in cases after the removal of the restrictions introduced as part of the zero-Covid policy, the National Health Commission (NHC) announces that asymptomatic cases will no longer be recorded in the daily bulletins. The Chinese authorities have also appealed to the population, asking them not to ask for emergency health care unless it is strictly necessary. At the same time, the fight against contagion continues with the introduction of a second booster dose for the elderly and frail.
The new policy has drastically reduced the number of coronavirus infections in daily official communication, despite the fact that the virus is circulating faster, especially in Beijing. In the last week, hospitals in the capital have seen a six-fold increase in medical services and a sixteen-fold increase in fever episodes, according to the China Daily. However, the latest bulletin reports only 2,291 symptomatic cases in all of China, while Vice Premier Sun Chunlan speaks of “rapidly growing” new infections in Beijing, according to state media reports.
Li Ang, deputy director of the Beijing Municipal Health Commission, told the media that there were 3,000 calls to emergency medical services on December 9, six times more than the average. The Guardian then quotes several Beijing residents who speak of friends, colleagues and entire families suffering from Covid. Employees of companies, schools and embassies have described a huge number of colleagues who are at home sick with the virus or caring for family members. James Zimmerman, a Beijing lawyer, said on Twitter that 90% of people in his office had Covid.