China experienced a notable increase in COVID-19 fatalities during June, with 239 people losing their lives to the virus. The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention disclosed that 164 deaths were recorded in May, while April and March saw no fatalities attributed to the virus.
China implemented a rigorous “zero-COVID” containment strategy in early 2020, which involved strict lockdowns, quarantines, border closures, and mandatory mass testing. These measures were credited with saving numerous lives. However, in December, the restrictions were abruptly lifted without adequate preparation, resulting in a final surge in which approximately 60,000 people lost their lives, according to official reports. The peak of deaths occurred in January and February, with a record high of 4,273 fatalities on January 4. The numbers gradually declined, reaching zero on February 23, as stated by the Chinese CDC.
Chinese health officials have not indicated whether this upward trend will continue or if they will recommend reinstating preventive measures. Among the deaths reported in June, two resulted from respiratory failure caused by infection, while the remaining cases involved individuals with underlying conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and other chronic illnesses.
According to data shared with the World Health Organization, China reported 99,292,081 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 121,490 deaths from January 3, 2020, to July 5, 2023. However, experts believe that the actual death toll in China may be significantly higher, potentially numbering in the hundreds of thousands or more. Nevertheless, China’s official figures still reflect a considerably lower mortality rate compared to the United States and Europe.