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China began conducting anal tests for COVID-19

Lines for COVID-19 testing in Beijing (Reuters)
Lines for COVID-19 testing in Beijing (Reuters)

China has started to use Anal tests to test people you consider to be at high risk for COVID-19, as reported by the state TV channel, a display that generated various reactions on social networks to a treatment considered invasive but that would be more effective.

The station CCTV reported that health workers anal swabs were performed on residents of neighborhoods with confirmed coronavirus cases in Beijing last week, while those in quarantine facilities designated have also been tested.

Small localized outbreaks in recent weeks have isolated several cities in northern China from the rest of the country and led to massive testing campaigns, which so far have mainly been done with throat and nose swabs.

However, the anal test method “can increase the detection rate of infected persons”, since traces of the virus remain longer in the anus than in the respiratory tractLi Tongzeng, chief physician at Beijing You’an Hospital, told CCTV.


Users of the popular Chinese social media platform Weibo reacted to the method with a mixture of joy and horror.

“How lucky to have returned to China earlier,” wrote one user. “Little hurt, but extreme humiliation,” said another, using a laughing emoji.

Other users who had undergone the intervention joined in the black humor. “I’ve had two anal swabs, every time I did one I had to do a throat swab afterward. I was so afraid that the nurse would forget to use a new swab, “joked one Weibo user.

The CCTV said Sunday that anal swabs would not be used as much as other methods, as the technique was “not convenient.”

As cases have risen around the world, China has imposed stricter requirements on international arrivals in an effort to keep domestic transmission close to zero.

All people arriving in the country must have multiple negative test results and be quarantined for at least 14 days at a designated hotel upon arrival, and many cities and regions impose additional home observation requirements.

(With information from AFP)


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Kim Diaz

Kim recently joined the team, and she writes for the Headline column of the website. She has done major in English, and a having a diploma in Journalism.

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