Covid: China to generalize anal testing to foreign arrivals

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is an issue that could become a source of tension between China and other countries in the world. At the end of February, two American diplomats complained of having undergone anal screening for Covid-19. Information which was then denied by Beijing. But, according to information from the British daily The Times, this test method could now become mandatory for all foreign travelers arriving in the country.

Some doctors believe that the use of an anal swab is a more reliable method than the other solutions used to detect Covid-19. The infection would remain visible longer in the anus than in the respiratory tract. Rectal screening would thus reduce the rate of false negatives. As Reuters details, these tests are already mandatory at airports in several cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, but also in the port of Qingdao. Test platforms will be set up. But the solution chosen by China to contain the epidemic is controversial because it is considered humiliating.

Japanese authorities protest

On Tuesday March 2, Tokyo asked China not to practice test for Covid-19 by anal swab on Japanese citizens. The authorities particularly deplore the “psychological suffering” caused by the process. An official request was sent to China via the Japanese embassy in Beijing. Chinese sampling methods are “based on science” and “in accordance with the evolution of the epidemiological situation and the laws and rules in force,” said a spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, when asked about the matter. , by Agence France-Presse.

This type of test, however, is not only reserved for foreigners. In January already, the Chinese authorities in several cities have resorted to it in the face of an outbreak of infectious cases. In addition, Galicia, Spain, also uses this method in its hospitals. However, they are specifically reserved for critically intubated patients for whom it is not possible to perform a nasal test.

According to data from Johns-Hopkins University, China has just over 100,000 cases since the start of the Covid-19 epidemic and has suffered fewer than 5,000 deaths. The official figures, however, remain questionable.


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