More states introduce COVID testing for travelers from China


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Spain, South Korea and Israel on Friday joined countries in adopting COVID tests for travelers from China, after Beijing lifted foreign travel restrictions despite coronavirus cases. get a raise.

Though its hospitals and morgues were overwhelmed—and international concern low official figures for infections and deaths there — China confirmed Friday that it has been transparent in sharing its COVID-19 data.

On Wednesday, a senior US health official said Beijing has provided only limited data to a global database of variants circulating in China, and testing and reporting. on new cases has decreased.

On Thursday, the head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, also called on China to act more aggressively during the pandemic. It is “understandable” that some countries have introduced restrictions in response to the COVID-19 surge, he said.

But on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin emphasized: “Since the outbreak of the epidemic, China has shared Related information and data with international communityincluding WHO, openly and transparently.

“From the very beginning, we shared the sequence of the novel coronavirus, thus making important contributions to the development of vaccines (and) relevant drugs in other countries.”

However, Spain, South Korea and Israel on Friday became the latest countries to introduce mandatory coronavirus tests for travelers arriving from China.

They, along with Italy, Japan, India, Malaysia, Taiwan and the United States, require a negative COVID test for all travelers from mainland China, in order to avoid importing new variants from the European giant. ASIAN.

Different European approaches

In Beijing, Wang argued that medical professionals in some countries had decided there was no need to impose entry restrictions on travelers from China.

The European Union’s infectious disease agency (ECDC) on Thursday said such restrictions were not warranted at the moment, given the high level of immunity in the EU and the European Economic Area.

Germany appeared to have accepted that on Friday, saying it does not currently see the need to introduce routine tests on arrivals from China.

But Health Minister Karl Lauterbach has argued for a coordinated EU-wide system to monitor variations across European airports.

“We need a European solution,” he said.

A coordinated approach will make it easier to detect new variants of the coronavirus quickly and do so appropriate measureshe added.

And while routine checks are “not yet necessary” for people arriving from China, that could change as data from China cannot be reliably obtained.

Explaining the restrictions that Spain has decided to impose, Health Minister Carolina Darias said: “The main concern lies in the possibility of new variants emerging in China that is not controlled.

“Given the health situation in that country, we know how important it is to act together, but also to act quickly,” she added.

estimate opponent

A national disease control agency in China said there were about 5,500 new cases locally and one death on Friday.

However, with the end of mass testing and the narrowing of criteria for COVID deaths, those numbers are no longer supposed to reflect reality.

Jiao Yahui, from China’s National Health Commission (NHC), asserted on Thursday that Beijing always publishes data “on COVID-19 deaths and infections in the spirit of openness and transparency”. “.

The NHC said last week that it would no longer publish an official daily COVID death toll.

But Health Risk analysis firm Airfinity says it now estimates 9,000 daily deaths and 1.8 million infections per day in China, and expects 1.7 million deaths across the country. at the end of April 2023.

The UK-based research firm says its model is based on data from China’s regional provinces before the changes to infection reporting were implemented, combined with case growth rates from previously COVID-free areas. Nation when they lift the restrictions.

This month, China said it would end mandatory quarantines for people arriving in the country, and it abandoned strict measures to contain the virus.

The world’s most populous country will downgrade its management of COVID-19 from January 8, treating it as a level B infection rather than a more serious type A.

© 2022 AFP

quote: Many states introduce COVID tests on travelers from China (2022, 30 Dec) retrieved 30 Dec 2022 from states-impose-covid-china.html

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