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China’s first report of coronavirus symptom-free carriers shows 130 new cases

China’s first report of coronavirus symptom-free carriers shows 130 new cases
  • National Health Commission releases number for first time after public and international pressure
  • The move follows in the footsteps of South Korea and the World Health Organisation
  • China has released figures for asymptomatic coronavirus carriers for the first time. Photo: EPA-EFE
  • China has released figures for asymptomatic coronavirus carriers for the first time. Photo: EPA-EFE
  • China reported 130 new asymptomatic 
    coronavirus
     cases on Wednesday, including the category in its daily count for the first time after pressure from the Chinese public and international health experts.
    The National Health Commission said the cases took the total number of people in the country under medical observation with symptom-free infections to 1,367.
  • ber of silent carriers could be as high as one-third of those who tested positive. The data suggested more than 43,000 people on mainland China had tested positive by the end of February but had no immediate symptoms.
  • They were not included in the official tally of confirmed cases, but were placed in quarantine and monitored.
    The World Health Organisation and South Korea classifies all people who test positive as confirmed cases, regardless of whether they show symptoms. However, the United States, Britain and Italy do not test people without symptoms, apart from medical workers with prolonged exposure to the virus.
    Chinese health authorities have repeatedly tried to ease concerns about asymptomatic patients
    , saying that as many were close contacts of people with the virus, and were therefore effectively under quarantine, they would have little chance of infecting others.
  • A report published in late March by researchers from Tongji Medical College in Wuhan, Fudan University and Harvard University, said that roughly 60 per cent of people who contracted the coronavirus in the central Chinese city of Wuhan were asymptomatic or had very mild cases which were not reported to the authorities.
    The research followed a review of about 26,000 laboratory-confirmed cases recorded in Wuhan where the coronavirus was first identified.

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