China Predicted to Record 65 Million New COVID Cases Per Week Due to Omicron XBB Subvariant


China is predicted to record 65 million new cases of COVID-19 per week, to coincide with the peak of cases arriving at the end of June. Information emerged that the Corona wave in the country was triggered by the Omicron XBB subvariant.

This prediction is considered surprising because a few months ago, China imposed the strictest COVID-19 control protocol compared to other countries.

Now with the outbreak of the latest Omicron subvariant, a spike in cases has occurred within six months after the strict handling of COVID-19 in China was lifted. Bearing in mind, the handling is in the form of lockdowns, mass testing, stifling quarantine, and strict mask requirements.

“People feel differently about this wave,” said Qi Zhang, 30, who works at a financial firm in the northern city of Tianjin. NBC News, Friday (2/6/2023).

“Last time, everyone was terrified, but now they don’t see it as a big deal.”

The prediction of 65 million cases per week was revealed by respiratory disease specialist Zhong Nanshan at a medical conference this week in the southern city of Guangzhou.

As explained in state media, the surge that started in late April was anticipated so that by the looks of it, China could be closer to 40 million infections per week. By the end of June, the number of weekly infections will reach 65 million.

Immunity Decreasing, Risk of Reinfection Cases Rising Again

By comparison, the United States reported more than 5 million cases in a week at its peak last January. But also like the US, China stopped providing weekly case updates this month making it difficult to know the true extent of the current outbreak.

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During China’s first Omicron wave in December and January, there were millions of cases of COVID-19 with infection with the Omicron variant. As a result, hospitals and crematoriums in cities across the country are overflowing with COVID-19 patients.

The chief epidemiologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Wu Zunyou, reported that about 80 percent of China’s 1.4 billion people were infected during that wave. However, now the residents’ immunity has been reduced in a matter of several months, so the risk of reinfection is increasing again.

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2023-06-02 03:04:09
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