A doctor in Wuhan, the city in China where the coronavirus outbreak began, claimed on Thursday that officials began deliberately undercounting infections ahead of Chinese dictator Xi Jinping’s visit the previous week.
The doctor, and some Wuhan residents speaking to foreign media, said claims of zero new infections in Wuhan by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) “cannot be trusted.”
Japan’s Kyodo News quoted the anonymous Wuhan doctor saying that patients were pushed out of quarantine over his objections to prepare for Xi’s visit. He said a “mass release of infected patients began” around the time Xi arrived, with tests scaled back or discontinued so that patients could be “released back into society.”
Radio Free Asia (RFA) on Friday quoted Wuhan residents who were extremely skeptical of official claims that zero new infections were detected beginning on March 18:
Wuhan resident Zhang Ruyi said public trust in the government is at a low ebb, because of attempts by local health officials to cover up the emergence of the new pathogen in December, partly by suppressing information and partly by classifying the surge of new cases as “pneumonia.”
“It’s funny, that,” Zhang said, adding that he is highly skeptical of the claim. “They’re not just lying now; they’ve been lying since the start, by classifying [COVID-19] cases under other diseases.”
“There are 60 million people in Hubei [the province where Wuhan is located], and they have all just been left to live or die without any help,” he said. “It’s basically down to a person’s immune system.”
“They are saying that only a few thousand died here in Wuhan, but does that sound right?”
Wuhan residents also noticed that mortuaries have been working overtime and hiring extra staff to collect and cremate bodies, a level of activity far beyond what would be necessary to cope with the 3,000 officially recognized fatalities in Hubei.
Furthermore, at the same time officials were claiming zero new infections, social media reports said dozens of people were being admitted to local hospitals with symptoms suspiciously similar to the coronavirus. Hospitals in Hubei have been caught clearly undercounting the number of infections and instructing patients to keep quiet about the treatment they are receiving.
“We can’t tell whether there are new cases in the hospitals or not, but local officials are sure to be covering up the truth,” another local eyewitness told RFA.
Hong Kong media charged on Monday that over 43,000 “silent carriers” – people who tested positive for the coronavirus but displayed no visible symptoms of illness – were undercounted by the Chinese government, making the full number of infections over 120,000 instead of the 79,000 reported. Chinese health officials stated in February that “silent carriers” would be quarantined and monitored, but would not be counted as coronavirus infections.
The Epoch Times on Sunday reported obtaining copies of Chinese government documents that confirm suspicions of deliberate undercounting:
The documents include four reports from the Wuhan health commission, which were statistical data sheets about diagnostic test results in the city on March 14.
The data showed that there were 91 newly diagnosed patients in Wuhan on March 14. China’s National Health Commission only reported 4 cases for that date.
Meanwhile, two residential compounds in Wuhan posted notices to alert their residents that there were people living there who were diagnosed with the CCP virus on March 19—another indication that the Chinese regime is concealing the epidemic’s true scale.
(Note: “CCP Virus” is the Epoch Times’ preferred name for the disease).
According to these Chinese government documents, local officials are well aware that new cases of the coronavirus kept appearing after March 18, the day Beijing began trumpeting zero new infections in Wuhan.
Neighborhood organizations continue reporting new cases of infection and more doctors are still being called into Wuhan despite the government making a great show of sending home hundreds of visiting medical staff who were supposedly no longer needed.
Small groups of Wuhan residents were seen leaving their homes on Monday for the first time in weeks as lockdown restrictions were partially lifted. Local officials said people who passed health screening would soon be allowed to return to work and non-residents trapped in the city since late January could begin requesting permission to return home.