x

Health

China Reports First COVID-19 Deaths in More Than a Year

BEIJING — China’s health authorities reported two COVID-19 deaths on Saturday, the first since January 2021, as the country battles its worst outbreak in two years driven by a surge in the highly transmissible omicron variant.

The deaths, both in northeastern China’s Jilin province, bring the country’s coronavirus death toll to 4,638.

Both fatalities occurred in elderly patients and were the result of their underlying conditions, Jiao Yahui, an official with the National Health Commission, told a news briefing on Saturday. One of them had not been vaccinated for COVID-19, she said.

Three-fourths of the new 2,157 community transmissions reported Saturday came from Jilin. The province has imposed a travel ban, with people needing permission from police to travel across borders.

Nationwide, China has reported more than 29,000 cases since the beginning of March, including those without symptoms.

While China has explored easing its pandemic response, it has pressed on with its tried-and-true policy of lockdowns and mass testing of millions of people as part of a successful, if burdensome, “zero-COVID” strategy since the initial outbreak in Wuhan in 2019.

The country has seen relatively few infections from the virus so far because clusters are tamped down as quickly as they’re discovered. The strategy has received popular support and prevented the large numbers of deaths seen in other countries, many of which have started to forgo any kind of social distancing measures.

Faced with the worst surge since late 2019, officials have vowed to double down on the zero-tolerance strategy to contain multiple outbreaks across China. However, leader Xi Jinping acknowledged for the first time the burden of the measures on Thursday, saying that China should seek “maximum effect” with “minimum cost” in controlling the virus.

Hong Kong, which is facing its worst surge of the pandemic, recorded 16,583 new cases Saturday. The city’s total coronavirus infections exceeded 1 million on Friday, and its number of deaths has already surpassed mainland China’s.

Mainland China’s COVID-19 data is counted separately from Hong Kong, a special administrative region.

 

RELATED

ATHENS - The mandate to wear face masks in all indoor and outdoor public spaces is lifted from June 1 through September 15, with some exceptions, Health Minister Thanos Plevris announced on Wednesday.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.

Video

Mission, TNH’s New Travel Documentary Series with Clelia Charissis (Trailer)

Every weekend, TNH and Clelia Charissis are on a mission, traveling around Greece and the world to highlight places through the people we meet along the way.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.