A neighborhood of nearly one million people in central China’s city of Wuhan declared a five-day lockdown on Wednesday (26) due to a resurgence of Covid-19 cases in the region.
The decision again shows how far China is from post-pandemic normalcy more than two and a half years after the city where the outbreak is believed to have started was first quarantined.
Hanyang District has locked down its 900,000 permanent residents and urged people to stay home and not go out unless absolutely necessary.
The measures include controlling roads and closing access to the district and communities for five days, after fifteen asymptomatic cases were confirmed in the district last Tuesday (5).
In turn, the inhabitants of the district must carry out PCR tests on each of the days that the confinement lasts.
Districts of provincial capitals such as Xining (center) or Zhengzhou (center) are confined, according to testimonies on social networks collected this Wednesday by EFE.
China has been struggling for more than five months with outbreaks of the Ômicron variant, the most serious case being illustrated by the confinement of the megalopolis of Shanghai (26 million inhabitants) for more than two months.
The country’s strict measures consist of strict border controls, isolation of all infected people and their close contacts, mobility restrictions and PCR testing campaigns whenever a case is detected.
In large cities, the practice of “standardized PCR tests” has been established, in which residents must present negative tests carried out in the last 24, 48 or 72 hours to access public places.
In addition to incalculable economic losses, these harsh measures have caused irritation and discontent among the population, which has so far largely supported this government policy.
At the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China (CCP) held last week in Beijing, neither Xi Jinping’s speech nor the appearances of the various spokespersons gave any indication of a change in strategy.
The consulting firm Capital Economics is already forecasting a significant lifting of restrictions in 2024 due to the low rate of vaccination among the elderly, vulnerable to the coronavirus.
According to counts from health facilities across the country, since the start of the pandemic, 258,167 people have been infected in the country and 5,226 have died, although the total number of infected people excludes asymptomatic people.