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A study by researchers in Hong Kong, according to The Guardian, says that cases of coronavirus in China may have been four times higher than those reported by the authorities.
According to research by academics at the School of Public Health at the University of Hong Kong, published in the Lancet, China reported more than 55,000 cases in late February, but the actual number of the first big wave is likely more than 232,000 people.
The study indicates that the improved figure is due to the fact that the case definitions of COVID-19 have changed since the virus started.
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“If the fifth version of the case definition had been applied throughout the epidemic with sufficient testing capacity, we estimated that as of February 20, 2020, there would have been 232,000… confirmed cases in China, against 55,508 confirmed cases reported ”, according to the study. said.
“In China, the broadening of case definitions over time has made it possible to detect a higher proportion of infections as cases,” the study added. “The actual number of infections could still be higher than currently estimated, given the possibility of under-detection of some infections, especially those that are mild and asymptomatic, even in the broadest case definitions.”
The coronavirus has killed nearly 190,000 people worldwide, according to a count compiled by John Hopkins University from official government figures.
The blame for the epidemic has become a hot debate between Beijing and Washington.
Scientific consensus is still being worked out, but the World Health Organization said the virus came from bats in the wild. Sources told Fox News that there was growing confidence that the naturally occurring virus was being studied in a Wuhan laboratory and had escaped – contrary to claims that it came from a market instead wet neighbor.
China has again reported no additional deaths from the coronavirus and only 10 new cases, including six from outside the country.
The number of hospitalized patients has dropped to 959, of which only 63 are considered serious cases, while just over 1,000 are under segregation and surveillance as suspected cases or for having tested positive for the virus without showing symptoms.
The epicenter of the global pandemic, the central city of Wuhan, which is responsible for the majority of cases and deaths in China, has only 69 people on treatment for COVID-19, of which only two are listed in serious condition.
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China has reported a total of 4,632 deaths among 82,798 cases, although, as in many countries, these figures are considered to be underreported. China is also accused by the United States and other countries of initially minimizing the spread of the epidemic after it was first detected late last year.
As new confirmed cases drop to near zero, China has reopened many businesses and allowed senior high school and college students preparing for exams to return to class. However, a ban on overseas arrivals and strict quarantine measures remain in place as China seeks to avoid an influx of new cases from abroad or a second wave of infections among those who have recovered or who have not gotten sick but could still spread the virus.