China’s treatment of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic came under fire after an official from the World Health Organization recently accused Beijing of underplaying the seriousness of the pandemic. Citing a Hong Kong Post report, ANI reported that the WHO Emergencies Director, Mike Rayan, criticised China for underreporting the COVID figure and concealing the deplorable situation in the country.
The Communist Party of China is currently struggling to deal with the wrath of the pandemic in the country. While the official figures are underplaying the pandemic, the bodies that are piling up in several crematoriums across the country tell a different story.
Speaking on the current situation in the country, the Emergencies Director of WHO, Mike Rayan, criticised the Beijing administration for its deceitful ways of hiding the real figures. “China’s COVID data is not giving an accurate picture of the situation there and it under-represents the number of hospitalization and deaths from the disease,” Rayan told the Hong Kong Post.
During the conversation with the news outlet, Ryan asserted, “We believe the current numbers being published from China under-represent the true impact of the disease in terms of hospitalisation admissions, in terms of ICU admissions, particularly in terms of death.” Ryan stated that the International organisation believes that Chinese government’s definition of death is “too narrow”.
China’s definition of COVID-related deaths attracts international skepticism
According to CNBC, China only counts deaths from pneumonia or respiratory failure in its official COVID-19 death tolls. In December, a Chinese Heath official informed that the deaths that occurred due to pre-existence illness are not counted as COVID-related deaths. As per the Hong Kong Post report, the recent definition of COVID-related death by the Chinese authorities has met with skepticism from various health experts.
While several nations including the US, the UK, Australia, etc, have imposed travel restrictions on people coming from China, the WHO doesn’t believe that COVID figures coming from China are telling the reality. Earlier this month, the WHO Emergencies Director was heard stating that the Chinese definition of COVID death is ‘too narrow’.
Ryan urged the individual health workers to report their own data and experiences. “We do not discourage doctors and nurses reporting these deaths and these cases,” Dr. Ryan asserted. “We have an open approach to be able to record the actual impact of disease in society,” he added. Looking at the deplorable conditions of the country, on January 4, the European Union also issued new warnings, ‘strongly’ recommending all member states to issue proper guidelines for passengers who are currently planning to fly from China.
Ryan concluded his assertion by stating that China has increased its engagement with WHO. However, he still looks forward to receiving “more comprehensive data”, from Beijing.