Another Mysterious outbreak in China

  • China’s Respiratory Illness Surge Prompts WHO Inquiry
  • Govt Seeks complete info from WHO on China’s recent outbreak
  • North China is the most affected with this Respiratory Illness

Hospitals in northern China are reportedly struggling with an influx of sick children as the country faces a surge in respiratory infections and clusters of pneumonia. The World Health Organization (WHO) has requested additional information from China regarding this situation.

Sarkari Helpline News observed long queues of people waiting to register at the Beijing Children’s Hospital in the capital. Waiting rooms were packed with parents and children, some of whom were receiving intravenous fluids.

In its analysis of China’s data, the WHO noted that the rise in cases occurred earlier than usual in the season but was not unexpected given the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, as has been observed in other countries.

According to the WHO, Chinese health authorities have not detected any new or unusual pathogens, and the increase in respiratory illnesses has not overwhelmed hospital capacities.

Based on the available information, the WHO advised against imposing travel restrictions in response to this outbreak.

The WHO noted that since mid-October, northern China has reported an increase in respiratory diseases compared to the same period in the previous three years. This rise coincides with the end of China’s National Day holiday week, one of its busiest travel periods.

China are reportedly struggling with an influx of sick children

This also marks China’s first full flu season since the easing of some of the world’s most stringent COVID-19 restrictions late last year, which resulted in reduced exposure to a variety of pathogens for many people over the past three years.

Countries like Australia and New Zealand, which also implemented “zero-COVID” policies, experienced similar surges in respiratory illnesses when those restrictions were lifted. Additionally, the United States experienced its own “tripledemic” of respiratory viruses last year.

Jin Dong-yan, a virologist at the University of Hong Kong, believes that a similar situation is likely unfolding in China.

The WHO requested detailed information from China regarding an increase in respiratory illnesses and reported clusters of pneumonia in children. This request followed an alert from ProMED, a publicly available reporting system for emerging diseases and outbreaks, which indicated that hospitals in Beijing and other parts of China were “overwhelmed with sick children” amid outbreaks of pneumonia.

Both China and the WHO have faced criticism for their transparency in reporting the initial cases of COVID-19, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019.

Chinese health officials attributed the recent rise in respiratory illnesses to the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, as well as a seasonal increase in overlapping respiratory diseases, including influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and the virus that causes COVID-19.

They also reported a surge in cases of mycoplasma pneumonia, a common bacterial infection that typically affects young children and is often referred to as “walking pneumonia” due to its rarity of requiring hospitalization.

Emma Wang, whose 7-year-old daughter contracted mycoplasma pneumonia, described the hospital they visited in Beijing as being “very crowded.”

“It took us two or three hours to see the doctor, whereas normally the wait time is only half an hour,” said Wang, 39.

“I know four or five families with this situation,” she added. “I am very worried the virus will keep spreading.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *