Over the last 2 weeks, China tested almost 10 million people for the deadly coronavirus infection in Wuhan and found only a few hundred positive cases, officials reported on Tuesday.
While China claims to have largely brought the virus under control, Wuhan, the Chinese city where the COVID-19 outbreak began last December is wary of a second wave. The city launched a mass testing programme after new infections emerged for the first time since the city re-opened in April following more than two months in lockdown.
According to statements made by officials at a press conference, over 9.8 million people were tested in the city of 11 million people between May 14 and June 1. They reported that 300 positive results were among asymptomatic patients.
“These numbers show that Wuhan is now the safest city,” said Feng Zijian, deputy director of China’s National Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
China does not include asymptomatic cases in its tally of confirmed infections. No asymptomatic people were found to have infected others, said Lu Zuxun, a public health expert from Wuhan’s Huazhong University of Science and Technology.
The novel virus, which surfaced last year, has so far infected more than 6 million worldwide. While China appears to have successfully flattened the infections curve, other countries are struggling to bring the number of cases down. Since December, the virus spread like wildfire across the globe.
China-- a country with a population of 1.4 billion people, has a relatively low death toll of 4,634. However, oubt has been cast on the reliability of China’s numbers and the United States has led the charge in questioning how much information Beijing has shared with the international community.