China may reopen its borders by next spring if enough people have been vaccinated against Covid-19, according to a medical specialist. Speaking to state broadcaster CCTV on Sunday, Zhang Wenhong, head of Shanghai’s Covid-19 clinical team, added that China risks falling behind other countries when it comes to reopening its borders if inoculation targets are not met.
Source: Artur Tumasjan
The Chinese government has pledged to inoculate 40 percent of the population by June and between 70 and 80 percent by the end of the year in order to achieve herd immunity. As of Monday, 142 million doses had been administered, according to the National Health Commission. But while the absolute number is high, it equates to less than 10 percent of the overall population.
Five locally-produced vaccines have been approved for general or emergency use in China, but many locals are reluctant to take them. Some, having seen vaccine scandals in the past, are wary of taking the Chinese options, all of which are yet to pass stage three clinical trials or receive approval from the WHO. Others simply do not see the urgency given China’s low Covid cases and tight border controls. In March, a survey of almost 1.8 million Shanghai residents found only half were interested in getting vaccinated.
While Covid-19 has largely been brought under control in China, 15 new locally transmitted cases were reported in the city of Ruili in Yunnan this week. China’s leading infectious disease expert Zhong Nanshan said the country’s low case numbers actually make residents more vulnerable to the virus as so few people have achieved natural immunity. “If most people are not immunized when China opens up, it will be very risky and outbreaks might surge,” he told Ifeng.com.
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Keywords: Chinese study covid antibodies
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China is currently speeding up the mass COVID-19 vaccination program in the country and working on the mutual recognition of health codes with other countries and regions to facilitate cross-border travel and communication. Meanwhile, the country is working with South Korea to establish a mutual recognition mechanism for health codes, as both sides have agreed to support the inclusion of each other's citizens into their COVID-19 vaccination programs, Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said at a news briefing on April 6. China has started discussing the mutual recognition of health certificates with other countries and regions in March, including the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Russia, Cambodia and Singapore.
Apr 12, 2021 10:01 Report Abuse
Over the weekend, Huashan Hospital Affiliated to Fudan University published an interview with Zhang Wenhong, director of the infectious diseases department, where he gave his expectations as to when people will be able to travel freely in and out of China, with open borders, and without the need for quarantine or showing negative nucleic acid test results. Since March 24, the National Health Commission has been publishing the total number of vaccinations daily on its official website. According to statistics from the National Health Commission, as of April 2, a total of 133,801,000 million doses of the COVID vaccine have been reported across China. In the interview, Zhang Wenhong said that at the current rate of vaccination in China, herd immunity in the country should be achieved in the spring of next year.
Apr 12, 2021 10:07 Report Abuse
I would like you to mind your own business and stop telling me what to do. Ask yourself does your complain here solve the factual situation? Being foreigner is nothing more than being a visitor to China, we must respect whatever the decision announced and implemented by the government, this applies to every nations.
Apr 14, 2021 13:18 Report Abuse