Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic might have seen worse devastation than the Chinese health authorities let on, reveals a survey. As indicated in a serological survey conducted in April by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention that released the data on Monday, the scale of the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan might have been nearly 10 times the recorded tally.
Around 4.4 per cent of those tested were found to have specific antibodies that are capable of fighting off the pathogen that causes coronavirus. This indicates that they might have been infected sometime in the past, reveals the serological survey of more than 34,000 people, as mentioned in a report in Bloomberg.
The ratio would suggest that Wuhan, home to 11 million people saw as many as 500,000 residents getting infected. This is 10 times more than the 50,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in Wuhan, as reported by the health authorities in mid-April.
This serological survey's results come amid the US' incessant questions on China's accounting of the breakout in Wuhan. Wuhan's numbers were soon overtaken by larger outbreaks in Europe and North America. A number of revisions of cases and deaths have raised questions on the accuracy of the data revealed by China.
It must be mentioned that the virus also has the ability to infect people without making them sick throughout the infection period and sometimes until later.
Meanwhile, the Chinese government has started emergency coronavirus vaccination of some key groups. The vaccination began on December 24 and is targeted at certain groups of people aged between 18 and 59 years. Two shots of the vaccine would be administered four weeks apart. As per the official Chinese time-line, the first cases of coronavirus emerged in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province, on December 31 last year. The city of 11 million people went into lockdown from January 23, followed by the entire Hubei province.