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New COVID Model Predicts Over 1 Million Deaths in China through 2023

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New COVID Model Predicts Over 1 Million Deaths in China through 2023

(CTN News) – Following unprecedented public protests, China lifted some of the strictest COVID regulations in the world in December.

As a result, the country is now seeing an increase in infections, raising concerns that COVID could spread throughout its 1.4 billion people during the Lunar New Year holiday next month.

Murray noted that when the IHME estimates were made public on Friday, “Nobody believed they would stick to zero-COVID as long as they did.”

The zero-COVID strategy in China may have been successful in containing early viral varieties, but the high transmissibility of Omicron variants rendered it unsustainable, according to him.

During the epidemic, governments and businesses have depended on the independent modeling team at the University of Washington in Seattle. They used provincial statistics and details from a recent Omicron outbreak in Hong Kong.

“Since the first Wuhan epidemic, China has seldom recorded any fatalities. Therefore, to estimate the infection mortality rate, we turned to Hong Kong, “Murray remarked.

In addition to using data on vaccination rates supplied by the Chinese government, IHME also predicts how different provinces will react when infection rates rise.

According to some specialists, 60% of China’s population will ultimately get the virus, with a peak infection rate predicted for January. Vulnerable groups, such as the elderly and those with pre-existing diseases, would be most struck by the disease.

The enormous population of vulnerable people in China, ineffective vaccinations, and the low vaccination rates among those 80 and older, who are most at risk for serious illness, are the main causes of worry.

OTHER MODELS

According to a paper posted on Wednesday on the Medrxiv preprint server that has not yet been subjected to peer review, disease modelers at the University of Hong Kong forecast that lifting COVID restrictions and simultaneously reopening all provinces in December 2022 through January 2023 would result in 684 deaths per million people during that period.

Without taking precautions like a widespread vaccine booster campaign, it translates to 964,400 deaths in China, which has a population of 1.41 billion people.

Researchers from the School of Public Health at Fudan University in Shanghai published another study in July 2022 in Nature Medicine that predicted an Omicron wave without restrictions would cause 1.55 million deaths over six months and result in a peak demand for intensive care units that was 15.6 times greater than available capacity.

According to Yanzhong Huang, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations, 164 million individuals in China have diabetes, which increases the likelihood of having a COVID with bad results. Additionally, 8 million adults 80 and older have never had a vaccination.

Huang stated that while Chinese authorities are now urging people to obtain booster doses from a list of more recent Chinese-made vaccinations, the government is still apprehensive about using foreign vaccines.

The National Health Commission of China said on Friday that it was stepping up immunizations and stockpiling ventilators and vital medications.

Source: Reuters

Related CTN News:

Omicron Boosters Are 84% Effective at Preventing Seniors from Being Hospitalized With COVID

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