Thu. Feb 22nd, 2024

ByBloomberg NewsJanuary 16, 2023 at 12:47 AM CST

The nearly 60,000 Covid-related deaths China reported for the first five weeks of its current outbreak, the largest the world has ever seen, may underestimate the true toll by hundreds of thousands of fatalities, experts said.

China’s abrupt pivot from Covid Zero in early December unleashed a surge of omicron infections and led to 59,938 virus-related deaths in the nation’s hospitals through Jan. 12, the National Health Commission disclosed this weekend. 

China’s 60,000 Covid Death Toll Spurs Calls for More Data

While the number swamps the few dozen deaths previously recorded in the official tally — which drew widespread criticism both at home and abroad, including from the World Health Organization — experts say it’s still likely to be an underestimate given the enormous scale of the outbreak and the mortality rates seen at the height of omicron waves in other countries that initially pursued a Covid Zero strategy. 

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