NEW YORK, Nov. 8 (Xinhua) -- The New York Times and some other U.S. media have been slinging mud at China's zero-COVID-19 approach, depicting an "extreme and harsh reality" of people's lives under China's stringent quarantine measures wherever new COVID-19 infections are found.
There is no doubt that, like any other place in the world, strict containment measures do affect people's lives and local businesses to some extent. However, it's simply not right to question China's efforts to eliminate the virus, especially for the United States, a country with the world's most infections and deaths from COVID-19.
China has proved the feasibility of its zero-COVID-19 approach with its own success in bringing the disease largely under control. While the deadly pathogen has so far taken more than five million human lives worldwide, with the United States alone having lost more than 754,000 lives, the Chinese mainland has not reported a single death since January. All the small-scale regional outbreaks in China over the past months were caused by imported cases.
If China, as those U.S. media suggested, had adopted the U.S. way to tackle the pandemic, the consequence would have been more dire. There is a mathematical understanding here: China has a population more than four times larger than that of the United States. If China had dealt with the pandemic as the United States did, its death cases would have been well over three million. Now the number of deaths on the Chinese mainland stands at 4,636.
As the U.S. media is focusing on several Chinese citizens who have complained how anti-COVID measures have disrupted their tour arrangements, it seems that these papers and outlets pay no heed to the hundreds of thousands of American families who lost their loved ones and their fellow countrymen to COVID-19.
However, even those minor inconveniences like travel restrictions are temporary in China, as the Asian country's people and governments at different levels have proven their compassion and competence in supporting those affected by quarantine measures since the outbreak of the pandemic.
The novel coronavirus is different from any other viruses we've seen both in ways of transmission and fatality rate. It's so devious that there are only two choices for humanity: full elimination or widespread infection.
Some say that China's stringent approach to containing the pandemic has come at a great cost to its economy and development. That is not completely true either. China's economic development remains robust despite the measures. The International Monetary Fund has projected that China's economy is expected to grow at 8.0 percent this year.
Human lives are invaluable. The sufferings, miseries and pains of the patients and their families cannot be measured by "economic cost."
While many countries have chosen to "live with the virus," the pathogen still looms large around the world as a ruthless threat. Data from Johns Hopkins University show that the world is still losing some 7,000 lives daily. As winter is arriving in the North Hemisphere and many countries no longer require social distancing and mask-wearing, a resurgence of the pandemic is very likely. The World Health Organization has warned that Europe could face 500,000 more COVID-19 deaths in the coming three months following loosened containment measures in the region.
The virus will not fade away by itself. The best still hope hinges on the full vaccination of most people and highly effective cures, both of which, however, are yet to come. So at present, strict containment measures are still the best way to save lives. China's efforts in this regard are unquestionable. Enditem