WHO asks China to share specific, real-time data on Covid-19 situation

WHO asks China to share specific, real-time data on Covid-19 situation

The World Health Organization has again urged China to regularly share specific and real-time data on the COVID-19 situation in the country, after Beijing relaxed its strict “zero-covid” policy on coronavirus cases. have increased.

The global health agency has asked Chinese health officials to share data on genetic sequencing, hospitalizations, deaths and vaccinations.

A high-level meeting took place between WHO and Chinese officials to seek further information on the situation on the current surge in COVID-19 cases and to offer WHO’s expertise and further support, a WHO statement on Friday I said.

“WHO again calls for regular sharing of specific and real-time data on the epidemiological situation, including more genetic sequencing data, data on disease impact including hospitalizations, ICU admissions and deaths and vaccinations data on vaccination and immunization status, especially of vulnerable people and those over 60 years of age,” it added.

WHO reiterates the importance of vaccination and booster doses to protect against severe disease and death for those at high risk.

High-level officials from China’s National Health Commission and the National Disease Control and Prevention Administration reviewed China’s emerging technologies in epidemiology, variant surveillance, vaccination, clinical care, communications and other areas, the statement said. Informed WHO about the strategy and actions. Research & Development.

WHO called on China to strengthen viral sequencing, clinical management and impact assessment and expressed willingness to provide cooperation in these areas, as well as risk communication on vaccination to counter hesitancy.

“Chinese scientists have been invited to engage more closely in the WHO-led COVID-19 expert network, including the COVID-19 clinical management network,” the WHO statement said.

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It said WHO has invited Chinese scientists to present detailed data on viral sequencing at the meeting of the Technical Advisory Group on SARS-CoV-2 Virus Evolution on January 3.

“WHO stresses the importance of monitoring and timely publication of data to help China and the global community prepare accurate risk assessments and inform effective responses.”

The current surge of the Omicron variant in the country has infected millions of Chinese, causing concern around the world.

Chinese health officials discussed with WHO experts on Friday the current surge of COVID-19 cases in the country, with the organization’s chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus asking Beijing to share more information.

The WHO tweeted on Thursday: “As I said in my most recent press conference – to conduct a comprehensive risk assessment of the COVID-19 situation in China, @WHO needs more detailed information.”

He also defended various countries, including India, for taking protective measures against people coming from China to prevent the virus from spreading.

“In the absence of comprehensive information from China, it is understandable that countries around the world are acting in a way that they believe they can protect their populations,” he said.

India has joined the United States, Japan, Italy and Taiwan in implementing mandatory COVID testing for travelers from China after authorities relaxed strict “zero-Covid” rules.

“We continue to call on China to share data and put all hypotheses about this pandemic on the table,” the WHO chief said, referring to the origins of the coronavirus first reported in China’s Wuhan city in late 2019. live.”

His comments come against the backdrop of China criticizing retaliatory measures taken by various countries, including the US, Japan and India, which require travelers from China to undergo mandatory tests.

Official COVID-19 figures from China have become unreliable as fewer tests are being conducted across the country following the recent relaxation of the “zero-covid” policy.

Beijing’s decision to lift all travel restrictions, including the scrapping of quarantines for incoming travelers from January 8 ahead of the Chinese New Year, has sparked concern around the world.

Millions of Chinese are expected to travel to different parts of the world for holidays during this period.

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