Coronavirus

Wuhan residents believe total coronavirus death toll could be 42,000

The official Chinese figures put the number of deaths at 3,304, however the activity at the funeral parlours indicate a far greater death rate.

La población de Wuhan cree que el coronavirus provocó 42.000 muertes
ALY SONG REUTERS

Residents in Wuhan, the city that saw the start of the Covid-19 outbreak that is now a worldwide pandemic, believe that the Chinese authorities are not releasing the true number of deaths from the coronavirus. According to local estimates, some 42,000 people have died after being infected with the virus, while the official statistic puts the death toll at just 3,304 deaths.

According to reports in the British press, families have been receiving the ashes of loved ones since 25 March in the city. Seven funeral parlours in Wuhan have been handing over up to 500 urns each per day; a total of the equivalent of 3,500 deaths per day.

In total this situation is expected to continue until 5 April, meaning a total of 42,000, with local residents understanding that the deaths are caused by coronavirus.

Coronavirus death toll in Wuhan thought to be higher

“The official number of deaths cannot be correct, because the funeral parlours have been working all day. So, how can it be so few people have died,” said Zhang, a Wuhan resident in statements to RFA, a local Chinese radio station. Another Wuhan resident said: “Maybe the authorities are gradually releasing the real figures so that people slowly accept reality.”

The reports include statements from a source close to the authorities in the province of Hubei, where Wuhan is located, which reveal that many people have died in their homes without ever being diagnosed as having coronavirus, meaning they never enter the official figures taking stock of the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to official Chinese figures, 81,470 people have been infected in the country, with 3,304 deaths. However, the residents in Wuhan, where the outbreak started, are now questioning these numbers.

Guide to the coronavirus pandemic.