China cancels Olympic ticket sales as it struggles to contain the uncontainable virus.
Now Canada is taking center stage in the Chinese covid-blame-game.
China is urging people to wear masks and gloves when opening mail, especially from abroad, after authorities suggested the first case of the Omicron coronavirus virus variant found in Beijing could have arrived via a package from Canada.
Authorities vowed to step up disinfection of overseas mail and are insisting postal staff handling it are fully vaccinated.
The precautions come less than three weeks before the capital opens the Winter Olympic Games and as several Chinese cities work to suppress new outbreaks of coronavirus infections.
“Minimize purchases of overseas goods or receiving mail from abroad,” state broadcaster CCTV said late on Monday in a social media post.
The Chinese are not following The Science™. Studies show that the virus is not transmitted by surface contact.
[Emanuel] Goldman, a microbiologist at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in Newark, decided to take a closer look at the evidence around fomites. What he found was that there was little to support the idea that SARS-CoV-2 passes from one person to another through contaminated surfaces. He wrote a pointed commentary for The Lancet Infectious Diseases in July, arguing that surfaces presented relatively little risk of transmitting the virus2. His conviction has only strengthened since then, and Goldman has long since abandoned the gloves.
Unfortunately for Chinese Patient Omicron Zero and those close to him, the full weight of the Chinese Communist Party public health bureaucracy came crashing down.
Beijing announced the Omicron case on Saturday after the patient developed a low-grade fever on Friday and took a voluntary test that came back positive for Covid-19. Authorities sealed off the patient’s residential compound and office building, and launched contact-tracing efforts.
Tests for more than 16,500 people identified as potentially being exposed to the patient came back negative, Pang Xinghuo, deputy director of the city’s municipal Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a press conference on Monday.
Location data showed that the patient, who had no recent travel history, hadn’t shared space with any other known Omicron patients or their contacts, or anyone who had recently returned from abroad, Ms. Pang said in comments reported by Chinese state media.
However, traces of the Omicron variant were found in samples collected from a piece of mail sent from Canada that patient had touched, Ms. Pang said, adding that the mail “could not be ruled out” as the source of the exposure.
And while China struggles to contain the uncontainable virus, the Winter Olympics are only a few weeks away.
China on Monday canceled plans to sell tickets to the public for the Winter Olympics in Beijing, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country reached its highest since March 2020. Organizers said last year there would be no international spectators at the Games — partly due to China’s weeks-long quarantine requirements — but they had promised to allow domestic audiences. Those plans were scrapped on Monday as China reported 223 new infections just three weeks before the Winter Olympics are set to open.
“In order to protect the health and safety of Olympic-related personnel and spectators, it was decided to adjust the original plan to sell tickets to the public and (instead) organize spectators to watch the Games on-site,” the Beijing Olympic organizing committee said in a statement.
It is unclear how these spectators will be selected and whether they will have to quarantine before or after the Games.
I suspect that we will learn much more about the true extent of covid in China during those games than Chinese officials have yet revealed.
I also project the Winter Olympics is going to be a colossal failure.
However, China has undoubtedly prepared a fascinating script that uses Canada as a scapegoat when its covid policies are shown to be useless.DONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.