The EU’s disease agency has stated that screening Chinese travelers for Covid-19 is “unjustified.” As per BBC, On Thursday, Italy encouraged the rest of the European Union to follow its example and ensure that Chinese newcomers are checked and quarantined as necessary.
The United States, Japan, Taiwan, and India have also lately announced required testing, while China contends with a Covid epidemic. However, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the outbreak is not likely to affect the EU.
The ECDC announced in a statement:
- We anticipate high levels of Covid in China due to the country’s low immunity and recent loosening of regulations.
- But because EU immunity is higher, a Covid outbreak in China is not expected to affect the bloc.
- The Chinese Covid-19 versions are already circulating in the European Union.
- Potential illnesses imported from China are “quite minimal” compared to the number of existing infections in the EU.
- Moreover, vaccination and immunization rates among bloc members are relatively high.
Concerns were expressed as a result of the Chinese government’s decision on January 8 to loosen travel restrictions after nearly three years of largely closed borders.
On Thursday, EU health authorities met in Brussels to coordinate a response. The ECDC stated, “We will maintain vigilance and be prepared to apply the emergency brake if required.” The EU can give recommendations, but each member, such as Italy, is free to determine its own policies.
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni stated that her country’s efforts to restrict Covid-19 broadcasts from China would be thwarted if other EU nations did not follow suit. A British minister stated that the subject was “under review.”
In the meanwhile, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that testing travelers from China, Hong Kong, and Macau were necessary “to help restrict the spread of the virus while we detect… possible new strains that may arise.”
The National Health Commission of China released its most recent daily Covid data on December 24, showing 4,128 new cases the previous day. Analysts assert, however, that these estimates are grossly inadequat and that the daily caseload may be closer to one million.
On Thursday, the British health data firm Airfinity estimated that Covid-19 could be killing 9,000 people per day in China, nearly doubling its previous daily estimate. Despite low official figures, the World Health Organization has warned China’s healthcare system may be under significant strain.
As the prevalence of Covid increases in China, other neighboring nations have immediately announced limitations.
- Before entering India, travelers from China and four other Asian countries are required to present negative Covid test results; those who test positive are placed in quarantine.
- Beginning on Friday, Chinese visitors to Japan will be screened for Covid upon arrival. Positive test subjects will be quarantined for up to seven days.
- Malaysia has implemented supplementary tracking and surveillance measures
- During the month of January, Taiwan will require people arriving from China by air or water to take Covid tests.