Beijing COVID-19 outbreak could have begun in May, expert says

17-Jun-2020 Intellasia | UPI | 3:27 PM Print This Post

The latest outbreak of the coronavirus in Beijing may have begun as early as late May, a leading expert says, as city authorities declare “wartime emergency mode” in specified districts.

Wu Zunyou, chief epidemiologist at China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention, told China Central Television late Monday a COVID-19 cluster centered at Xinfadi Wholesale Market may have begun as early as late May, when it was going unreported.

Last month, Chinese authorities had claimed “victory” over COVID-19 during the National People’s Congress presided over by President Xi Jinping.

Wu said on the Chinese television program the “next three days” are crucial in determining the spread of the virus.

China’s reported number of cases has not surpassed 90,000 since the initial outbreak in the central city of Wuhan.

Over the weekend, city authorities in Beijing had reported a total of 72 cases of the coronavirus, following the rise in new cases last week. Another 27 cases were confirmed on Monday, bringing the total to more than 100 cases in the Chinese capital since Thursday.

Wu also told Chinese media there is a “high likelihood” the latest wave of the coronavirus was likely imported from overseas. He also said there is no need to raise alert levels across the entire city and no need to conduct tests across the entire urban population.

On Tuesday, Beijing added 12 more “risk areas,” as nine districts of the city were confirmed for virus cases.

China’s National Health Commission said Tuesday there have been no deaths amid the latest wave of infections.

Xinfadi Market was closed on Saturday. Schools and kindergartens have canceled classes.

Local experts have said the situation was not unlike the early stages of the outbreak in Wuhan.


Category: China

Print This Post

Comments are closed.