Harvard study, Wuhan hospitals were already crowded in October – Politics


Satellite images showing a surge in the number of vehicles outside Wuhan’s major hospitals last winter suggest that coronavirus may have been present and spread to the city months before authorities recognized the disease. This is what emerges from a study by Harvard Medical School, Boston University of Publich Health and Boston Children’s Hospital, after the analysis of the satellite images of the car parks of the main Wuhan hospitals between January 2018 and April 2020, and the trends in Internet searches . The Guardian reports it.

According to the study, which is still under review, parking images showed a “sharp increase” starting in August 2019 and a peak in December 2019. Between September and October, five of the six hospitals analyzed saw their highest daily volume of cars. As for web searches, the use of the words “diarrhea” and “cough” increased markedly about 3 weeks before the peak in confirmed Covid-19 cases at the end of 2019.

The authors of the study said that although they could not confirm whether the increase in vehicle traffic was directly related to the new virus, the evidence “supports other recent work showing that the emergency occurred before the identification (of the coronavirus. ) in the Huanan fish market, “in late December, when Chinese officials reported a cluster at the market in central Wuhan.

“These findings also confirm the hypothesis that the virus emerged naturally in southern China and that it was potentially already in circulation at the time of the Wuhan cluster,” says the report. “Something was going on in October,” John S Brownstein of the Boston Children’s Hospital told ABC News. “Clearly, some level of social distress was occurring well before the start of the new coronavirus pandemic was identified.”


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