Shanghai houses patients in mass quarantine hubs as hospitals strain under Covid pressure

The city plans to test all residents over the next nine days with wards at breaking point

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Covid patients in Shanghai are being sent into giant quarantine hubs, as plans are being brought in to test every resident over the next nine days.

Images have emerged of hospital wards packed with patients, as the city was sent into a strict lockdown over the weekend.

A man gets tested for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a makeshift nucleic acid testing site behind barriers of an area under lockdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, in Shanghai.
A man gets tested for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at a makeshift nucleic acid testing site behind barriers of an area under lockdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, in Shanghai.

Residents in the city have been split down the Huangpu River as part of the operation to test the entire population.

The Telegraph reported a British woman, who recorded a positive test, said she has been sent to the Shanghai World Expo Centre.

The centre, which has been co-opted for quarantining those with mild and no Covid symptoms, can house as many as 7,000 patients.

Portable lavatories and beds can be seen in images of the site. However there are no showers at the centre.

Emma Leaning recorded the crowded hospital ward, which was teaming with people, some of which could be seen coughing.

Official figures have the number of asymptomatic cases as 3,450. The same authorities say that there were 50 symptomatic Covid cases on Monday.

A police officer in a protective suit keeps watch near a bridge leading to the Pudong area across the Huangpu river, after traffic restrictions amid the lockdown to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Shanghai.
A police officer in a protective suit keeps watch near a bridge leading to the Pudong area across the Huangpu river, after traffic restrictions amid the lockdown to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Shanghai.

However, on the evidence of the images taken on hospital wards, these numbers could be higher.

Ms Leaning's husband, Shane, who had Covid symptoms, was sent to hospital. However she felt compelled to complain about his treatment.

She said: "Not good. Shane is at hospital. Cold, no running water, a soiled toilet and no paper. A wire frame and thin sheet to sleep on and shut away with three strangers, unable to communicate."

Compared to other countries around the world, China's Covid rates are still low. However, officials have insisted on locking down more than 60 million people.

Family members living on opposite sides of the Huangpu River are desperate for their elderly relatives to be taken to hospital. Under the current lockdown measures, family members can't travel across the river to assist their relatives.

One person wrote online: "As a Shanghainese, I felt the coldness and ruthlessness of my city; for the first time, I found that the Huangpu River could also separate family..."

"I don’t want to be forced to be a person who hates the government."

Another said: "It’s really hard to understand China’s Covid control measures"

"Shanghai only had three deaths in the past three years. More than tens of millions of people are locked at home, hundreds of billions of economic losses, only to reduce the number of severe cases and the number of infected people…is it worth it?"