According to Reuters, Beijing authorities reported 158 new cases of Covid-19 since June 11, when the first new case was confirmed in almost two months ago in Xinfadi market, one of the largest wholesale food markets in Asia. The cluster of new COVID-19 cases in the capital city sparked second wave fear and is also a heavy blow to the Chinese government as they declared victory over the outbreak.
Beijing has imposed partial lockdown and carried out mass testing and screening. All Xinfadi market employees, their contacts and nearby residents were the first ones tested for COVID-19. With more testing sites established in the parks and sports facilities, government is trying to reach a goal of testing 46,000 people.
As shown in the above tweet with pictures, all the employees working in restaurants and bars in Chaoyang District grouped by communities, were ordered to take nucleic acid tests (viral tests). Thousands of people were waiting for over 2 hours in scorching heat for the test. No social distancing practicing. It was poorly organized and chaotic.
It’s hard to understand why so many people, with no symptom, with mild symptom and/or with severe symptom, were brought together. Can you imagine how many people who don’t have Covid-19 may be exposed to it while they were waiting for the test? Was public health official ever consulted prior? It proves Chinese government officials’ insanity and incompetence.
Being different from Chinese authoritarian government’s state control, U.S.’s COVID-19 response comes from evidence-based approach, and collaboration between public health and civilian communities. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued guidelines with regard to COVID-19, including tests for current infection which is posted on their official website as follows:
“Not everyone needs to be tested for Covid-19. Most people have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. They may not need to be tested. At this time, there is no treatment specially approved for people who have Covid-19.”
CDC has guidance for who should be tested, but decisions about testing are made by state and local health departments or healthcare providers. People who have symptoms of COVID-19 and want to get tested, they need to contact their primary care physicians first to get authorization. With doctors’ referral people can call the state designated sites to make an appointment for the test, either drive-through test or walk-through test with no risk of clustering.
When New York City’s first drive-through COVID-19 testing site in the parking lot of the South Beach Psychiatric Center in Staten Island opened on March 19, 2020 by prioritizing high risk and symptomatic patients, it made a headline. New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said to New York Daily News reporter, “No windows down until you get all the way to the swab itself and then it’s windows back up. We have stringent site safety, stringent site security. We have safety operators on site patrolling, looking for any violations or any no-gos.”
Even at the walk-through test sites, people follow PPE protocols including facial covering, gloves and hand sanitizer and maintain a 6-foot or greater distance from each other, which can reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
On June 18, Chinese health expert says that Beijing’s coronavirus outbreak is under control, which echoed what the Chinese Communist Party’s mouthpiece, Global Times Editor-in-Chief Hu, Xijin tweeted on June 16. Really? It has merely been 7 days from outbreak on June 11 to “Under Control” on June 18. Hopefully it is under control this time.
- Video from: https://twitter.com/waynescene/status/1273095638515953664?s=20
- Liu Niuniu twitter: https://twitter.com/niuniu_Liu2?s=20