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China Stops Publishing Asymptomatic COVID Cases, Reports No Deaths

BEIJING (Reuters) -China’s National Health Commission (NHC) will as of Wednesday stop reporting new asymptomatic COVID-19 infections, as many people without symptoms no longer participate in testing, making it hard to accurately tally the total count, it said.

The health authority reported 2,291 new symptomatic COVID-19 infections on Dec. 13.

China recorded 7,679 new cases a day earlier – 2,315 symptomatic and 5,364 asymptomatic infections, which China counts separately.

Excluding imported infections, China reported 2,249 new symptomatic local cases. There were a total of 7,451 local cases including asymptomatic infections a day earlier.

There were no new deaths, the same as the previous day, keeping fatalities at 5,235.

As of Dec. 13, mainland China had confirmed 369,918 cases with symptoms.

China’s capital, Beijing, reported 476 symptomatic cases, according to the NHC. That compared with 559 symptomatic and 468 asymptomatic cases the previous day, local government data showed.

Some cities reported asymptomatic case counts before the NHC’s announcement.

Financial hub Shanghai reported 16 symptomatic cases and 117 asymptomatic cases, compared with 14 symptomatic cases and 115 asymptomatic cases a day before, the local health authority reported.

Guangzhou, a city in the south of nearly 19 million people, reported 533 new locally transmitted symptomatic and 741 asymptomatic cases, compared with 291 symptomatic and 434 asymptomatic cases a day before, local authorities said.

Chongqing reported 179 new symptomatic locally transmitted COVID-19 infections and 1,165 asymptomatic cases, compared with 180 symptomatic and 1,398 asymptomatic cases the previous day, local government authorities said.

(Reporting by Wang Jing and Liz Lee; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Gerry Doyle)

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