‘Not by novel virus’: What China said on ‘mysterious pneumonia’
China's health ministry claimed that the rise in respiratory illnesses across the country is being caused by the flu and other known pathogens.
A pneumonia outbreak in China has alerted the world including the World Health Organization (WHO) which sought more information about the situation from the country. The rise in cases of respiratory illness across China has triggered fears of something like the Covid-19 pandemic for which both China and WHO got blamed for inaction.
On Sunday, China's health ministry asked local authorities to increase the number of fever clinics amid the latest crisis. The ministry also urged the clinics to keep a good stock of necessary drug supplies.
"Efforts should be made to increase the number of relevant clinics and treatment areas, appropriately extend service hours and strengthen guarantees of drug supplies," National Health Commission spokesperson Mi Feng told a news conference.
"It is necessary to do a good job in epidemic prevention and control in key crowded places such as schools, childcare institutions and nursing homes, and to reduce the flow of people and visits," added Feng.
What China has said about the surge in respiratory illnesses
China's health ministry claimed that the rise in respiratory illnesses across the country is being caused by the flu and other known pathogens and not by a novel virus.
According to a report by PTI, a National Health Commission spokesperson said the recent clusters of respiratory infections were due to an overlap of common viruses such as the influenza virus, rhinoviruses, the respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, the adenovirus as well as bacteria such as mycoplasma pneumonia, which is a common culprit for respiratory tract infections.
What does data provided to WHO reveal?
WHO had sought information from China's health officials about the latest health crisis. As per the data provided to WHO, a rise in hospital admissions of children has happened since October due to diseases including bacterial infection, RSV, influenza and common cold viruses.