Covid testing reimposed at US borders for China, Hong Kong and Macau *4 Updates*

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The United States has announced today that it is reimposing Covid border controls for visitors from China, Hong Kong and Macau.

The new testing requirements follow similar decisions on pre-travel tests from Japan and India today.

 

New York Times report

 

UPDATE 1 – More countries make testing mandatory for travellers from China.

America has joined Italy, India, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia and Japan in announcing new measures after the abrupt end of Beijing’s zero-Covid policy sparked a surge in cases. 

 

A sample of tests from two recent flights to Europe found that 50 per cent of people on board had the virus.

Dailymail report

 

The Financial Times are reporting that 250 million people have caught Covid in China in December 2022

 

The Chinese State newspaper, the Global Times, is reporting that China expects to deal with 124 million cases of Covid, with 2.7 million people requiring ICU care, although no time period is mentioned in the article:

Global Times report

 

Japan’s Asahi Shimbun – half of China’s 1.4 billion people will be infected by Covid in the coming months:

Half of China’s 1.4 billion people will be infected by the novel coronavirus in the coming months, analysts said, based on trends seen after the government eased its “zero COVID-19” policy earlier this month.

An internal document believed to be about a government meeting was leaked on the internet. It showed new infections from Dec. 1 to Dec. 20 totaled an estimated 248 million, or 18 percent of the Chinese population.

If the pace of infections has remained the same, the number of new cases now could exceed 300 million.

Ashai Shimbun report

 

In response to the unfolding Covid crisis, Japan has introduced testing and quarantine for travellers from China:

Japan will require a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival for travelers from mainland China due to the rapid spread of the virus in the country, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said on Tuesday.

Travelers from China who test positive will be required to quarantine for seven days, Kishida told reporters, adding that the new border measures for China will go into effect from midnight on Dec 30.

JapanToday.com report

 

UPDATE 2 – India insists on a negative Covid test for travellers from 5 countries including China and Japan:

India has mandated a COVID-19 negative test report for travellers arriving from China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand, the federal health minister said.

Passengers from those countries would be put under quarantine if they showed symptoms of COVID-19 or tested positive, Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya tweeted on Saturday, as he posted photographs of tests being conducted at the international airport in the capital, New Delhi.

Al Jazeera report

 

UPDATE 2 – Begrudgingly, the UK has now followed suit with testing requirements for travellers from China:

UK expected to require travellers from China to provide negative pre-departure COVID test

Britain is set to follow a growing list of countries tightening the rules on arrivals from China as the country deals with a big jump in cases after scrapping many of its tough virus laws.

Sky News report

 

UPDATE 3 – Tedros @WHO finally speaks up

 

UPDATE 4 – China uploads new Covid genome sequences to Gisaid. About bloody time, but many more needed!

China: New sequences uploaded to Gisaid

China_hCoV-19_phylo_20221230(1)

 

 

We will update this post as more information becomes available.

 

 

Japan: A new pandemic record for Covid-19 deaths *1 Update*

 

 

 

 

Image by Jan Vašek from Pixabay