Coronavirus outbreak: China not sharing important data, say experts

China is not sharing important data that may help contain the coronavirus outbreak, experts have said, according to a Voice of America’s report.

According to Jennifer Nuzzo, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, countries are looking for information on whether the situation in China is getting worse or better as people are trying to develop their own control strategies against COVID-19. However, that information is not forthcoming, she said.

According to the report, China is releasing a daily count of newly-identified cases. But, it is not disclosing the date when those patients became ill, which is important because without the date of symptom onset, epidemiologists cannot tell if an epidemic is growing or waning.

The daily count of identified cases indicates when testing labs are processing samples but it does not reveal much about the course of the outbreak, experts were quoted as saying

Larry Kudlow, the director of US President Donald Trump’s Economic Council, also expressed disappointment for the “lack of transparency” on the part of China.

“We are a little disappointed that we haven’t been invited in and we’re a little disappointed in the lack of transparency coming from the Chinese,” said Kudlow.

Former US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chief Tom Friedman, who currently heads public health non-profit Resolve to Save Lives, said that they did not have very basic information.

Beijing has reportedly declined the offer of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to send top experts to the country reeling under massive coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, a team from the World Health Organization (WHO) has arrived in China to help respond to the COVID-19 outbreak spreading out of the central city of Wuhan.

“We hope that information will be coming out,” said Friedman.

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