The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced that air passengers originating from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau will be required to present a negative COVID-19 test or documentation of recovery when entering the United States.
In its announcement dated December 28, 2022, the CDC said that the requirement has been put in place in a bid to slow the spread of COVID-19 in the United States during a surge in COVID-19 cases in the PRC “given the lack of adequate and transparent epidemiological and viral genomic sequence data being reported from the PRC.”
There is mounting concern over the rapid spread of COVID-19 in China following the recent easing of strict lockdown measures. More alarming is the fact that China has decided not to include deaths caused by knock-on effects of the virus in its official COVID-19 death toll.
The BBC has reported that China’s counting method does not correspond with WHO guidance, and results in a figure that is way below the death toll in many other countries.
There have also been recent reports of hospitals, crematoriums and funeral homes being packed in various Chinese cities.
WHO scientists have warned that the unchecked spread of COVID-19 in China could spur the emergence of new variants, which might unravel progress made globally to contain the pandemic.