Many believed it was all over, even WHO thought so, but the Covid-19 pandemic has resurged as a result of China relaxing its restrictions. The United States, India and many other countries are now demanding negative COVID-19 tests from travellers arriving from China.
A statistical model published by healthdata.org predicts that 300,000 people could die from COVID-19 infections by April 2023 and 1.6 million people could die by the end of the year. However, that projection depends on whether COVID transmission can or will be contained with new lockdowns and by the success of vaccination programs.
A prominent epidemiologist, Eric Feigl-Ding, tweeted that the situation was "thermonuclear bad." He predicts "over 60% of China's and 10% of the Earth's population likely infected over the next 90 days. Deaths likely in the millions — plural. This is just the start."
"Infections are steeply on the rise and hospitals are overwhelmed. It's quite [certain] that the situation is spiraling out of control, at least in Beijing and other big cities," said Björn Alpermann, a sinologist at the University of Würzburg in Germany. "The reports that crematoriums are working 24/7 are deeply disturbing."
A senior health official in the eastern city of Qingdao was quoted as saying half a million people are being infected daily. Health authorities in Zhejiang, a coastal province south of Shanghai, said the number of daily infections now exceeded the one million mark.
The Chinese government boasted they won a victory against COVID with their zero-COVID strategy. For some time it looked that way in 2021 and had pursued a zero-COVID policy since the pandemic began. Popular protests and damage to the economy resulted in a policy change.
China no longer publishes daily figures for COVID-19 cases and deaths. China also narrowed the criteria by which COVID-19 fatalities were counted – a move experts said would suppress the number of fatalities attributable to the virus.