China reports 18 new local COVID-19 cases

BEIJING [China], June 2 (ANI): The Chinese mainland reported 18 locally transmitted confirmed COVID-19 cases, including 11 in Beijing and five in Shanghai in the past 24 hours, according to the National Health Commission's report Thursday.

China's Shanghai reported five confirmed locally transmitted COVID-19 cases and eight local asymptomatic cases on Wednesday, the municipal health commission said. According to the National Health Commission, a total of 286 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals after recovery on the Chinese mainland in the last 24 hours.

The commission said in its daily report that the total number of COVID-19 patients discharged from hospitals after recovery reached 216,898 on the mainland on Wednesday.

China's much-publicized 'zero-covid' strategy that the government credited for bringing the country out of the pandemic till recently is falling apart as the rapidly mounting cases are again forcing mass lockdowns like those seen in 2020.

Meanwhile, according to the Hong Kong Post, despite having ample medical resources like hospital beds and antiviral pills, a vast majority of elderly people over 60 years have not been vaccinated as of yet.

The fact that several elderly people over the age of 60 have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 in China might be a deliberate action by Chinese authorities to leave the aged people out of the protection radar, considering them to be a burden on its economy.

Further, guidelines issued by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China meant to meet the needs of the elderly is not followed in China which can be seen in the higher number of elderly people's death due to Covid. Many elderly patients who passed away in a Shanghai hospital after contracting Covid were because they were not vaccinated.

Moreover, China follows a labor-intensive economic program that takes into account people below age 60, reported The Hong Kong Post. However, many aged people who retire are left without sufficient resources, whose cost is borne by families or the state.

As a result, the surge in the elderly population has reduced the supply of the labor force and has enhanced the burden on families. Health care expenses might take up to one-fourth of the GDP. Since the growth of the elderly population cannot be stopped, it might gravely impact the long-term balanced development of the country.