Shanghai keeps COVID restrictions

Domestic News

Today in pandemic news from China: Shanghai will keep restrictions in place, moldy food, and more.

Hazmat suits aren’t going anywhere. REUTERS/Andrew Galbraith.

Critical cases rise: The number of the patients in severe or critical condition in Shanghai more than tripled to 159 on Wednesday, from just over 50 the day before.

  • The city reported eight deaths on Wednesday, bringing the total number of COVID deaths in the current outbreak to 25.

Shanghai’s restrictions aren’t going anywhere: City authorities said on Thursday that the restrictions would remain in place, even in districts that managed to cut COVID-19 transmission to zero, despite an earlier announcement last week that fanned hopes the situation might return to normal.

Moldy food: Shanghai officials pledged to tighten oversight on pandemic supplies after receiving complaints from residents that the food distributed by the authorities had spoiled. Some Shanghai neighborhoods were ordered to throw away the rotten food.

Truckers take a big blow: Strict local pandemic policies are choking off the transport of goods and other logistic services in the Yangtze River Delta. China’s trucking fleet has suffered the biggest hit, with many drivers caught up in a web of quarantine controls that has disrupted and delayed delivery operations.

COVID tests in Chanel shopping bags: Some locked-in residents are flashing their wealth by hanging luxury-branded paper bags outside their doors to collect at-home antigen tests and other daily deliveries. Doorknobs are dripping in designer paper bags from fashion brands like Prada, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chanel, and Burberry as a way to show off status.

Quarantined offices go viral: Aerial photos of Shanghai office spaces that were turned into quarantine sites have been widely shared on Chinese social media. Grids of windows show hundreds of beds packed in fluorescent-lit rooms, capturing the dystopian atmosphere of the citywide lockdown.

A growing mental health problem: Chinese search engine Baidu last week recorded a huge spike in searches for “psychological counseling” since March, as demand for counseling services rises over the nation’s spate of lockdowns and exposes the lack of adequate care and preexisting mental health issues in China.

Meanwhile, outside of Shanghai:

Nadya Yeh