Half of Chinese Arrivals to Italy Carrying COVID-19 Virus – No New Variants, All Omicron

Posted originally on December 29, 2022 | sundance

December 29, 2022 | sundance | 164 Comments

Yesterday Italian officials announced that half the airline passengers arriving from China tested positive for COVID-19.  However, in a follow-up today Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said so far all of the testing shows the omicron variant, no new sub-variants of the virus.

The Biden administration CDC announced yesterday that effective January 5, 2023, all passengers traveling to the U.S. from China will be required to show a negative COVID-19 test prior to arrival.

(Bloomberg) — Italy didn’t find any new concerning Covid-19 mutations among recent arrivals from China who tested positive for the virus, a relief for officials worried about fresh health threats.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said Italy already sequenced half of the samples tested in Milan and they all show the omicron strain of the coronavirus. “This is quite reassuring,” she said at a press conference Thursday. “The situation in Italy is under control, and there are no immediate concerns.”

China has scrapped its strict lockdown measures in recent weeks, leading to a surge in infections in the country. While the exact numbers are unclear, the rapid spread has led to concerns around the world about new strains emerging.

The US and Italy on Wednesday joined an increasing number of nations demanding Covid tests for travelers from China, after Japan and Taiwan unveiled similar measures. (link)

It seems odd that with all this time passed, China is still struggling with COVID-19 mitigation and treatment while the rest of the world seems to have moved beyond it.  Perhaps this is an outcome of China’s zero covid approach.

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