local authorities chinas apologized on Thursday after a three year old died of carbon monoxide poisoning be delayed the medical care due to the Covid lockdown, in a rare admission of liability.
The city of Lanzhouin the northwest of the country, has been in quarantine under the harsh Chinese policy of zero covidwhich has left millions of people across the country confined to their homes, often complaining of poor conditions, food shortages and slow emergency responses.
Local police had previously confirmed the death of a child in a statement on Tuesday, but did not mention delays in access to medical treatment.
That same day, images of people desperately administering the child spread rapidly. cardiopulmonary resuscitationalong with videos of small neighborhood protests that same night.
The child’s father, last name At thatwrote on social media on Wednesday that workers stationed at a checkpoint had denied permission to leave your homeand that an ambulance did not arrive on time.
More than an hour later, she managed to leave the compound and hail a taxi to go to the hospital, and shortly after her son was pronounced dead, she said.
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On Thursday, district health authorities posted a detailed account of the incident on social media and expressed their “condolences” to the child’s relatives.
“We sincerely accept the criticism and supervision from the media and netizens, and are determined to rectify (mistakes),” they wrote.
The authorities of Lanzhou admitted that it took more than 90 minutess to send an ambulance after the boy’s father called an emergency line several times, confirming that there were lengthy interactions with staff at the gate of the compound.
“This incident has revealed the blockages in the emergency rescue mechanism, the weakness in the capacity to respond to emergencies and the inflexibility of the work of the cadres,” the statement said.
Authorities said Tuo had finally managed to hail a taxi with the help of a policeman at another checkpoint.
However, Tuo said that he had been forced through the barrier at the checkpoint and that it was a passerby who helped him mark the journey.
He also stated that the community staff asked him to present the result of the PCR testeven though the entire housing complex had been quarantined and had not been tested for the previous 10 days.
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The tragedy triggered a storm of criticism on the Internet to China’s zero Covid policy, with a related hashtag censored on Weibo after gaining hundreds of millions of views.
“Three years of the Covid pandemic have been his whole life,” read a widely circulated comment.
“Even though I haven’t experienced it, I feel like I can’t breathe,” another user wrote.
The incident is the latest in a series of health emergencies which have sparked outrage after they were aggravated by zero Covid policies.
Late last month, censors deleted posts saying a 14-year-old girl had died in the central city of Ruzhou after falling ill in a quarantine center and being denied prompt medical care.
In January, a pregnant woman in the city of Xi’an miscarried after being denied admission to the hospital for not having the result of the PCR test.
(With information from AFP)