After two high-ranking government officials in China’s Hubei Province died from the new form of viral pneumonia, many officials in Hubei are getting special intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) injections at medical facilities to protect themselves against the disease. Meanwhile, locals who have symptoms of the deadly virus are being turned away by hospitals.
The outbreak first occurred in Wuhan City, the capital of Hubei Province, in early December last year. Officials did not confirm the outbreak until Dec. 31.
The information was made public when Chongqing-based Upstream News published a report about an official named Huang Tongzheng in Shangrao City, Jiangxi Province, a neighboring province of Hubei, who recently developed symptoms similar to Wuhan pneumonia.
However, the report was soon revised. The current version is only a short announcement of Huang’s case, and the section about Hubei officials receiving IVIG injections was completely deleted.
After the recent deaths of two Hubei officials due to the coronavirus, Chinese authorities in Hubei started to rush to medical centers to get their immune systems boosted with IVIG injections, according to the news report, which was also confirmed by an insider who spoke to Radio Free Asia.
IGIV enhances the immune system, and thus helps a person to fight off infections.
Prior to Huang’s case, Chinese state media reported the deaths of two high-ranking officials who died of Wuhan pneumonia in Hubei.
The first was Wang Xianliang, a former Director of the Ethnic and Religious Affairs Committee of Wuhan. The main responsibilities of this committee are to ensure that members of the various ethnic and religious groups follow Party regulations; and to persecute adherents of Falun Gong, a peaceful meditation practice persecuted in China since 1999. Wang was said to have always executed his supervisors’ orders.
He died on Jan. 26.
The second reported death was of a Hubei official named Yang Xiaobo, who was the mayor of Huangshi City between 2008 and 2014.
Cao Shanshi, a well-known financial blogger and whistleblower, wrote on Twitter that Yang “was infected during the provincial Two Sessions. He developed symptoms after the Two Sessions and died only two days after getting his diagnosis.”
The “Two Sessions” are parallel administrative meetings of the government and Communist Party, held annually at various levels of government.
In Hubei Province, the meetings were held this year between Jan. 11 and 17. State-run media reported that officials did not wear facial masks during the meetings. In total, 1,348 people participated in the Two Sessions.
On Jan. 30, Huang Xianglong, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) secretary of Songzi City in Hubei, began receiving treatment at a local hospital.
Upstream News reported that he is suspected of contracting the coronavirus, but the hospital would not confirm. He was promoted to his current position in September 2018.
The deputy director of the Hubei commerce department Huang Mouhong is also being treated at a hospital in Wuhan.
According to Chinese state-run media, Huang started to feel sick on Jan. 19, and visited the provincial institute hospital on Jan. 21, where he was diagnosed with the coronavirus. He then was transferred to another hospital.
The Hubei provincial institute hospital especially serves government officials. However, it does take ordinary civilians when there is availability.
Ordinary Citizens Turned Away by Hospitals
Meanwhile, several individuals from Wuhan disclosed to the Chinese-language Epoch Times that their family members who experienced coronavirus symptoms couldn’t get admitted into the hospital for treatment.
Mr. Wang, who currently lives in Toronto, Canada, told The Epoch Times that his mother in Wuhan had a fever on Jan. 15. When over-the-counter medication failed to relieve her symptoms, she went to the No. 4 Hospital in Wuhan on Jan. 19 and learned that she was infected by the virus.
However, she couldn’t receive treatment. Wang, who tried to help his mother by phone from Toronto, was told that any patient seeking treatment for Wuhan pneumonia needed to register with their community service director first. The director will then report the case to “upper levels.” After approval, the patient will be put on a waiting list.
“We don’t know how many people have been waiting to get treatment before my mother,” Wang said. “We can only wait. And the director refused to tell us who the ‘upper level’ is.”
Another woman from Wuhan said she and her husband sent her father to the hospital for treatment on Jan. 25. They literally “knelt down” to beg the hospital staff to admit him, but the hospital refused to admit her father, she said.
“My father passed away on Jan. 29 and was immediately cremated on the same day,” the woman said. “Now my husband also has symptoms. No one came to help us disinfect the room my father used to stay. We tried to purchase disinfectants to do it ourselves, but they are all sold out,” she added.
The Chinese-language Epoch Times called Jinyintan Hospital, a designated hospital for the treatment of Wuhan pneumonia, to inquire about the hospital’s current guidelines for admitting patients.
A hospital staff stated that the hospital now only admits patients who were selected and approved by the Wuhan Health Commission.
“Any patient who wants to seek treatment in our hospital will have to communicate with the Wuhan Health Commission,” he said.