China says 80% of population have had Covid-19, as millions travel for Lunar New Year

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China says 80% of population have had Covid-19; Eight out of 10 people in China have been infected with Covid-19, a renowned government scientist has claimed.

Wu Zunyou, an epidemiologist at China’s Centers for Disease Control . Prevention said on Saturday – the eve of the Lunar New Year – that the current “epidemic wave has already infected 80% of the people” in the country of 1.4 billion. people.

His claim came amid concerns that the flow of travel around the Lunar New Year holiday – sometimes called. The “world’s greatest migration” – could spread the virus to the countryside cause another wave of infections.

However, Wu said on his personal social media account. That this scenario is unlikely since so many people have already been infected.

“In the next two to three months. The possibility of a large-scale resurgence of Covid-19 or another wave of infections across the country is very low,” Wu said.

China’s Ministry of Transport estimates more than 2 billion passengers will travel during the 40-day Lunar New Year period. As people across the country return to their hometowns for family reunions for the first time in three years since the start of the pandemic. ago. many years ago.

China’s state broadcaster CCTV reported on Sunday that more than 26 million passengers traveled during the Lunar New Year.

China says 80% of population have had Covid-19; This is only half of the number of travelers on the same day in 2019. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, but 50.8% more than in 2022.

On the day before the start of the Lunar New Year. More than 4.1 million people traveled by train and 756,000 people traveled by air for the festive gatherings, CCTV added.

Skepticism over infection figures

Earlier, research by Peking University’s National Development School showed. That more than 900 million people, or 64% of China’s population, were “probably” infected with Covid-19 on January 11.

The university’s research also found. That the outbreak peaked across the country on December 20, about 13 days after China began easing its Covid restrictions.

According to the study, the number of infections peaked nationwide by the end of December.

Chinese health officials made similar claims, saying on Thursday that the number of fever-related clinic visits. Hospitalizations for COVID-19 in China had fallen from peaks in late December and early January.

According to the authorities, the number of Covid patients requiring hospital emergency care has also peaked.

Nearly 60,000 people with Covid-19 died in Chinese hospitals between December 8 and January 12, according to government figures, after China suddenly abandoned its “zero Covid” policy.

But Mike Ryan, WHO’s director-general for health emergencies, suggested earlier this month that data released by China “underrepresents the true impact of the disease” in terms of hospital and intensive care unit admissions and deaths.

According to an internal estimate by the country’s top health officials, nearly 250 million people in China may have been infected with the coronavirus in the first 20 days of December. If true, the estimate — which AZ24 News could not independently confirm — would be roughly 18% of China’s population.

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