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Global Times

COVID-19 may reach another peak next spring: Chinese expert

Global Times

Source:Global Times Published: 2020/3/22 19:43:40

The COVID-19 pandemic may reach a peak next spring after receding this summer; and it is expected to "travel" back and forth from the Southern and Northern hemispheres for the next one or two years, a top Chinese expert on infectious diseases said.

The point was raised by Zhang Wenhong, director of the Department of Infectious Diseases from Shanghai's Huashan Hospital, at a video conference on Tuesdaysharing with German medical experts on how to efficiently fight the novel coronavirus, the cause of the ongoing pandemic of the COVID-19.

During the conference, Zhang said that the pandemic may hit a low ebb when most infection cases will have been tamed this summer. But it is too early to predict whether the virus will come back next winter, Zhang said.

He estimated the pandemic will diminish from April to June.

He also predicted that sporadic infections will be spotted after it recedes in summer, and then lead to another peak of the virus next spring. It is possible that the virus will travel back and forth from the Southern and Northern Hemispheres, considering seasonal changes.

"Currently many Chinese cities have recorded zero new infections. The data is not wrong, and one doesn't have to doubt it. After all, we have been under quarantine for four weeks," said Zhang. He also said this does not signal for relaxation of China's situation as the country is still facing a severe risk of imported infections, as does every country.

Zhang said that the measures China has adopted to fight the virus are responsible and correct, judging by the situation back then. "We were thinking that we had to tame the virus, even if it means having to sacrifice our normal lives. And we did it, at least we fulfilled our responsibility," said Zhang.

He said many countries alter their prevention policies very often, but the good sign is that everyone is being more active in battling the pandemic. The fact whether countries take the measures seriously to prevent the viral spread will be seen largely when the pandemic recedes, whether it be this summer, the end of the year, or next summer, Zhang noted.

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