Covid COVER UP: China accused of withholding virus information from rest of the world

A medical worker attends to a patient
A medical worker attends to a patient

China face accusations of not releasing Covid data with the rest of the world

Published

China face accusations of not releasing Covid data after it was revealed that it has submitted less than 1,000 samples of the virus to the international scientific community in the last four weeks.

The UK by contrast shared 7,325 Covid sequences from 138,041 cases with Gisaid, a global pathogen database used by scientists to identify and track Covid and its variants.

Around 9,000 people in China are probably dying each day from Covid.
Around 9,000 people in China are probably dying each day from Covid.

The sequences contain details about the genetic compositions of the virus variations are made.

Health experts have shared concerns that China’s lack of clarity could mean new testing methods will have to be created in order to detect new variants of the virus.

Data seen by The Telegraph shows that in the last month China has only submitted 940 virus sequences as cases in the country surge as a result of a mass lifting of Covid restrictions.

The US and WHO both urged Beijing to share more details including the number of cases, severity of the disease and the number of people admitted to hospital.

Around 9,000 people in China are probably dying each day from Covid, UK-based health data firm Airfinity said on Thursday, nearly doubling its estimate from a week ago, as infections ripped across the world's most populous nation.

COVID infections started to sweep across China in November, picking up pace this month after Beijing dismantled its zero-COVID policies including regular PCR testing on its population and publication of data on asymptomatic cases.

Cumulative deaths in China since Dec. 1 likely reached 100,000 with infections totalling 18.6 million, Airfinity said in a statement. It says it uses modelling based on data from Chinese provinces before the recent changes to reporting cases were implemented.