China reports first COVID-19 deaths since hard-line policy eased

Canada Global (Web News) China announced its first COVID-19 fatalities on Monday after relaxing its strict containment measures, as hospitals and crematoriums battle an outbreak that authorities claim is impossible to monitor.
The nation is moving forward with the repeal of its zero-Covid policy, and in one megacity, employees are now permitted to report to work even if they are obviously ill.
Following the termination of required mass testing, official case counts are generally seen as being untrustworthy, and concerns are growing about an outbreak of infections in underdeveloped rural areas around the forthcoming Lunar New Year holidays.

Authorities in Beijing, where dread of COVID-19 has left streets empty and pharmacies devoid of medication, reported two deaths caused by the virus on Monday.

Unvaccinated elderly Chinese continue to be at risk in the millions. The real cost of the pandemic may not have been publicly disclosed, according to reports from overburdened hospitals and crematoriums.
Hoe Nam Leong, a Singapore-based infectious diseases expert, said: “Numbers don’t convey the whole story. I expect the real number of deaths to be greater.”
He said that many infections were probably going undiagnosed due to a lack of testing.
Leong noted that while health professionals may be downplaying Covid as a cause of death, other facilities were too packed to accept patients.

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