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Monday, May 20, 2024

10m people tested in Wuhan in 10 days amid fears of second wave

Wuhan, the area where the novel coronavirus disease was first reported, has managed to test nearly 10 million people in 10 days through the use of pooled samples. This herculean effort was done to forestall a much feared second-wave of the coronavirus in China.

Nearly 10 million residents of Wuhan city in central China were tested for coronavirus over 10 days.

“Wuhan has tested 9.89 million people during its ten-day citywide nucleic test campaign, found 300 asymptomatic carriers, and no confirmed cases,” a municipality official said, according to daily Global Times.

The deadly coronavirus was first reported in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, last December. Over 11 million people live in the city, known for its high-tech industry. Mass testing began after a cluster of six new cases was reported on May 9.

10m people tested in Wuhan to avoid second wave

“Wuhan spent approximately 900 million yuan [$126.58 million] on its city-wide nucleic test campaign, and the expense will be shouldered by the Wuhan government,” said Hu Yabo, executive deputy mayor of Wuhan, who was also part of the massive testing campaign.

Since the start of the outbreak, Wuhan reported over 50,000 cases of the deadly infection.

China has reported 83,022 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 4,634 deaths, most of which were recorded in Hubei province.

Read more: Coronavirus haunts Wuhan as the city reports new cases

China’s National Health Commission on Tuesday confirmed five new infections, all imported.

New cases of pandemic prompt decision to get 10m people tested in Wuhan 

Wuhan, China, the original hotspot of the Covid-19 pandemic, had earlier reported five new indigenous cases as the number of infections across mainland China grew slightly.

China reported 17 new cases of the novel coronavirus last month. Of the newly-detected cases, seven are linked to overseas travel, and 10 are believed to be the result of local transmission.

In addition to five indigenous cases in Wuhan, three others came from Jilin province, one from Liaoning, which borders North Korea, and another from Heilongjiang province, which borders Russia.

Fears grow of a ‘second wave’ in China 

China faces a potential second wave of coronavirus infections due to a lack of immunity among its population, its government’s senior medical advisor has warned.

After months of lockdowns and curbs on travel China has largely brought the virus under control, but fears of a second wave have risen as clusters have emerged in northeast provinces and in the central city of Wuhan.

“The majority of… Chinese at the moment are still susceptible of the Covid-19 infection, because (of) a lack of immunity,” Zhong Nanshan, the public face of government’s response to the pandemic, told CNN.

“We are facing (a) big challenge,” Zhong added. “It’s not better than the foreign countries I think at the moment.”

Chinese still susceptible to COVID-19: Is it due to lack of Immunity? 

Earlier, a story in Business Insider by Katie Canales, earlier pointed out that lack of immunity could lead to a second wave of COVID-19 infections in China, according to the country’s senior medical adviser.

According to Chinese sources it is now believed that “Herd immunity” would only happen when enough of a population has become immune to the disease to prevent it from spreading, so the rigorous shut downs of Wuhan and Hubei province starting from January has not provided lasting protection to large Chinese populations. Now Chinese scientists are also worried that for how long this immunity would last. There is no clarity.

Read more: Second wave of coronavirus cases hits China

The first case of the coronavirus disease was found in China, in December 2019, and lockdowns in Wuhan were enforced starting from 23rd January. Restrictions started to ease by mid March with life in the country resuming to some degree of normality. China was then credited across the world for being a model of efficient control and fight against the Corona pandemic.

Coronavirus across the globe: no signs of slowing down

As of today, the global number of people infected by the Novel Coronavirus and suffering from the associated disease COVID-19 has crossed 6.27 million. There have been 376,000 deaths associated with the disease. A statistic to take heart from is the fact that 2.70 million people suffering from COVID-19 have recovered. 

COVID-19 associated lockdowns have caused a slowdown in the international economy, with experts saying that it will shrink by as much as 6% this year. Estimates of its recovery do not show it recovering before 2022.

Anadolu with additional input by GVS News Desk