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Nearly 250 million Covid-19 infections in China: Leaked document

Beijing: Almost 250 million people in China may have been affected by Covid-19 in just 20 days after the 'zero-covid policy' was diluted in the first week of the month, according to radio Free Asia citing leaked government documents circulating on social media.
In the 20-minute meeting of China's National Health Commission, as per the leaked document look like, 248 million people were infected with Covid-19 from December 1 to 20, or 17.65 per cent of China's population. As per Radio Free Asia, the data on covid cases released by government officials on December 20 is different from the reality as nearly 37 million were estimated.
A senior Chinese journalist told Radio Free Asia on Thursday that the document was genuine, and had been leaked by someone who attended the meeting who was acting deliberately and in the public interests.
Earlier Saturday, China mainland reported 3,761 new cases of confirmed infections and no new deaths were reported.
The report came at the time when British-based health data firm Airfinity, said that the infections in China are likely to be more than one million a day with deaths at more than 5,000 a day.
New modelling by Airfinity has examined data from China's regional provinces. The current outbreak is growing more rapidly in some regions than in others. Cases are currently rising much more quickly in Beijing and Guangdong.
"Using the trends in regional data our team of epidemiologists has forecast the first peak to be in regions where cases are currently rising and a second peak driven by later surges in other Chinese provinces," Airfinity said in a statement.
The Airfinity model estimates case rates could reach 3.7 million a day in a January peak and 4.2 million a day in March 2023.
Airfinity's Head of Vaccines and Epidemiology Dr Louise Blair said, "China has stopped mass testing and is no longer reporting asymptomatic cases. The combination means the official data is unlikely to be a true reflection of the outbreak being experienced across the country.
"China has also changed the way it records COVID-19 deaths to only include those who die from respiratory failure or pneumonia after testing positive. This is different to other countries that record deaths within a time frame of a positive test or where COVID-19 is recorded to have attributed to the cause of death. This change could downplay the extent of deaths seen in China." (ANI)

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