China reports nearly 13,000 Covid deaths over last week

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A high-ranking health official stated that the vast majority of the population has already been infected with the virus, and as a result, China reported nearly 13,000 Covid-related hospital deaths between January 13 and 19.

China reported nearly 60,000 Covid deaths in hospitals on January 12, but official data has been widely questioned since Beijing abruptly eliminated anti-virus controls last month.

In a statement released on Saturday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in China reported that over the course of the outbreak, 681 patients who were admitted to a hospital died of respiratory failure brought on by the coronavirus infection, and 11,977 patients died of other illnesses in addition to infection.

Those who died at home from the virus are not included in the figures.

An independent forecasting firm called Airfinity has predicted that during the Lunar New Year holiday, there will be approximately 36,000 daily Covid deaths in China.

Additionally, the company estimates that the disease has claimed the lives of over 600,000 people in China since the country ended its zero-Covid policy in December.

For the most important holiday in the lunar calendar, which fell on Sunday, tens of millions of people have traveled across the country in recent days to spend time with their families. This has raised concerns about new outbreaks.

However, due to the fact that nearly 80% of the population has already been infected with the virus, a high-ranking health official stated that China will not experience a second wave of covid infections within the next two to three months after millions of people return to villages to celebrate Lunar New Year.

Wu Zunyou, chief epidemiologist at the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention, stated in a Saturday post on China’s Twitter-like Weibo platform, “Although a large number of people traveling during the Spring Festival may promote the spread of the epidemic to a certain extent… the current wave of the epidemic has already infected approximately 80pc of the people in the country.”

“The possibility of… a second wave of the epidemic across the country in the short term, for example, in the next two to three months is very small.”

One of the world’s largest mass movements of people will involve more than two billion trips, according to China’s transportation authorities.

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