The Beijing Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) announced that one COVID-19 patient, a 53-year-old woman, had become infected after having dinner with a friend from Dalian who was an asymptomatic carrier.
The virus has now been confirmed by authorities to have spread from Dalian to nine other cities in four provinces and one directly-governed municipality.
A city of about 6.9 million in northeastern China, Dalian has launched a series of strict rules to prevent the spread of the virus. But locals became disgruntled at authorities’ haphazard implementation and fought with medical staff and each other.
Meanwhile, on Sunday, the Dalian Municipal Health Commission announced that it had arranged for 520 additional hospital beds to treat COVID-19 patients and was preparing for another 860 additional beds.
The Dalian Municipal Health Commission announced more diagnosed COVID-19 patients on July 28, including a patient who had not contacted any previously diagnosed patients or asymptomatic carriers, suggesting there is already community spread in Dalian’s latest outbreak.
The new wave outbreak in Dalian was first announced on July 23.
Three days later, China’s National Health Commission Ma Xiaowei ordered COVID-19 testing on every resident in Dalian within the following four days.
Dalian residents shared their experiences with the Chinese-language Epoch Times, explaining that the testing created chaos.
Ms. Liu lives at the Xinchang residential compound in the Xinzhaizi neighborhood. She was informed by her landlord that all residents must be tested on July 27.
That morning, Liu went to the test site at the Xinzhaizi Primary School after 6 a.m. She thought she could be tested earlier if she arrived earlier.
“We just saw countless people waiting in front of the school gate. Some of them arrived at 3 a.m.,” Liu said. She realized that many other residents had the same idea as her.
When the testing site opened at 8 a.m., people in the queue pushed and shoved. “It’s a mess everywhere,” Liu added. “We had no idea where we should go… very crowded.”
Liu witnessed residents fighting with each other due to the crowding. Some argued with medical staff, while police officers onsite started shouting in an attempt to restore order.
By 10 a.m., Liu’s child, who had accompanied her to the testing site, grew impatient. Liu decided to go to a local hospital to get tested for her and her family members, which cost them 106 yuan ($15).
Getting tested at the public testing sites is free-of-charge, but authorities will not return test results to residents. If someone wishes to receive their test result, they must test again at a local hospital.
But according to new city rules, residents must show a negative nucleic acid test result in order to take the metro, or leave the city.
The Epoch Times also obtained an official’s handwritten investigative record about the suspected patient zero, Mr. Shi, in Dalian—revealing that a local hospital did not promptly test Shi for COVID-19.
According to the record, on July 14, Shi visited a local hospital, but his ailment was treated as a normal cold. Shi also took medicine himself, the Lianhua Qingwen Capsule, a Chinese herbal medicine previously promoted by the Chinese regime’s top specialist as an effective drug to prevent, mitigate, and treat COVID-19. But the medicine had no effect, and Shi’s health kept deteriorating.
On July 21, Shi visited another hospital and was finally diagnosed with COVID-19 on July 22.
Since May, Zhong Nanshan, one of China’s top epidemiologist experts, has promoted the Lianhua Qingwen Capsule as an effective COVID-19 treatment on state-run media as well as a government conference.
But on June 26, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning letter, stating that Lianhua Qingwen was an unapproved and misbranded product, and would not be allowed to be sold in the United States.
Lianhua Qingwen is manufactured by Shijiazhuang Yiling Pharmaceutical, a company founded and chaired by Wu Yiling. Wu and Zhong co-founded a medical research center in Guangzhou city in July 2019, which studies Chinese medicine that can help treat lung-related diseases.
“Zhong may benefit from the [capsule] medicine’s sales,” said U.S.-based China affairs commentator Li Linyi.
And in the far-western Xinjiang region, the latest outbreak continued to worsen.
An official at the Xinjiang Regional CDC told The Epoch Times by phone that most of the newly diagnosed patients had not visited the area identified by authorities as the ground zero—the Erdaoqiao neighborhood in Urumqi. They contracted the virus from other places and were diagnosed via general nucleic acid testing, the official said.
Though he did not provide further details, his admission of infections outside the ground zero suggested a broader community outbreak.
Residents of different cities in Xinjiang said in phone calls that local authorities locked down Ghulja, Kashgar, and Changji, though there were no official announcements. Furthermore, their residential compounds, which had not publicly reported any diagnosed cases or symptomatic carriers, were sealed off, with no resident allowed to leave home.