An editorial published in the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) Global Times on Wednesday criticized the United States for allegedly having a higher number of coronavirus cases than China – a claim clouded by significant evidence that China’s official statistics are false.
The editorial starts off reporting the United States’ latest coronavirus statistics, then compares these numbers to the Chinese Communist Party’s.
The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. exceeded 3 million on Tuesday, making the country the only one with more than a million infections…On Monday, global coronavirus cases passed 3 million, meaning one in three patients is in the U.S. The U.S. is home to more than 300 million people. If the same proportion of infections were to have occurred in China, a country with over 1.4 billion people, 4 million people would have been infected, about 50 times more than the [actual] number of reported cases.
China claims its total number of coronavirus cases to be roughly 83,940 as of Wednesday. However, much doubt has been cast upon China’s officially reported coronavirus numbers by health authorities around the world. On April 7, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) published a report arguing that the true number of coronavirus cases in China is likely at least 2.9 million, more than one hundred times the total 81,907 cases reported by China at the time.
On April 21, medical journal the Lancet published research by academics at Hong Kong University’s School of Public Health which found that at least 232,000 people were likely infected in the first wave of coronavirus in China, four times the official figure of 55,000 total cases reported by the country as of February 20. The Hong Kong study found that China’s national health commission deceptively manipulated diagnostic testing criteria for coronavirus several times between January 15 and March 3, which allowed authorities to report a lower number of infections than actually existed.
“The true number of infections could still be higher than that currently estimated, considering the possibility of under-detection of some infections, particularly those that were mild and asymptomatic, even under the broadest case definitions,” the Hong Kong researchers added.
On April 16 in Wuhan, site of China’s initial coronavirus outbreak late last year, local government officials announced a 50 percent increase in the city’s death rate after revising its officially reported figures. Wuhan’s official death rate was 2,579 prior to the admission and 3,869 after. At the time, Chinese state media quoted an unidentified Wuhan epidemic official as saying that the oversight was due to “belated, missed, and mistaken reporting.”
At press time on Wednesday, China had officially reported 4,637 total deaths from the Wuhan coronavirus. As with China’s true number of infections, most global health authorities believe China’s true death toll far exceeds the official figure. Late last month, Radio Free Asia calculated China’s total number of deaths to be at least 46,800, more than ten times its official number.