COVID-19: Share specific, real-time data on situation, WHO asks China
The World Health Organization (WHO) has once again asked China to share real-time and specific data regularly on the COVID-19 condition in the nation amid the recent spike in the cases after Beijing decided to relax its strict "zero-COVID" laws. The world health body also asked China's health officials to provide data on genetic sequencing, vaccinations, deaths, and hospitalizations.
Why does this story matter?
- The western media has claimed that China is laboring to control the surge in COVID-19 cases.
- Clips on social media show Chinese crematoriums and health centers packed with COVID-19 patients.
- China condemned those reports and called them biased, distorted, and a politically driven campaign.
- Beijing also claimed that it has the lowest COVID-19-related serious illness and death rate compared to other nations.
WHO and China chair high-level meeting to discuss COVID-19 status
WHO officials recently chaired a high-level meeting with China on the current COVID-19 situation in the country and offered its expertise and support, the health organization said in an official release on Friday. WHO also reinstated the significance of coronavirus vaccination and booster jabs to protect people against the highly contagious virus and from death for individuals at higher risk.
WHO demands more detailed data on coronavirus status from China
"WHO again asked for regular sharing of specific and real-time data on the epidemiological situation - including more genetic sequencing data, data on disease impact including hospitalisations, ICU admissions and deaths -and data on vaccinations delivered and vaccination status, especially in vulnerable people and those over 60 years old," the official WHO release was quoted as saying by the news agency PTI.
WHO ready to help China control COVID-19 surge
The statement also added that high-level officials from China's National Health Commission and the Prevention Administration, and the National Disease Control informed WHO on the country's evolving plan and actions in vaccination, monitoring of variants, clinical care, epidemiology, R&D, and communication. WHO also suggested China bolstered its clinical management, viral sequencing, and impact review and conveyed a willingness to deliver assistance in these parts.
10 nations impose travel curbs on China
The United Kingdom and France joined the United States, India, and a list of other nations in imposing mandatory COVID-19 tests for travelers from China. The United States, Japan, Taiwan, and Italy have also started random COVID-19 testing of international passengers at the airports. Meanwhile, Spain, Israel, South Korea, and France also need proof of a negative RT-PCR test for individuals arriving from China.
WHO backs countries imposing travel restrictions
WHO has supported nations implementing travel restrictions on passengers coming from China and stated: "In the absence of comprehensive information from China, it is understandable that countries around the world are acting in ways that they believe may protect their populations."