The Head of the WHO warned yesterday at the opening of the 75th World Health Assembly that Covid-19 is “certainly not over” + that reported cases to continue to increase in 70 countries spread in all parts of the world. China’s approach to Covid is criticised in some quarters. Its measures include mass testing, extensive contract tracing, and sudden lockdowns. Is China being too rigorous?
The US Centre for Diseases Control and Prevention notes that for over-65s the death rate is 65 times higher than the 18-29 age group + 330 times higher for the over-85s. China has 267m people aged over 65. A recent joint US/China study predicted China would risk over 1.5m Covid deaths if it dropped its zero Covid policy. China’s medical resources compared to its population + some developed countries are “relatively scarce” + with its unbalanced regional development the number of Covid sufferers would increase considerably if strict control measures were prematurely relaxed.
“We must be on alert, since we are still treading on thin ice” in our fight against the virus, the Communist Party’s Shanghai committee said after a meeting of the city’s top cadres on Monday.
So China is firm + resolute. Its government does interfere with the right of the people to walk freely in public places; it does require its people to stay at home and not to wander into the streets on pain of arrest and imprisonment. There are arrests.
The Western media tries to portray the Chinese population as victims of an oppressive dictatorial government carrying out its daily functions without concern for the freedom of the population. But there is a counter-argument that the Chinese people are more free because they have their health and their freedom to live – unlike the 1.2m people who have died from Covid in US + UK