Provincial hospitals in China have sent hundreds of medical workers to Beijing to help the capital city ease the burden as its hospitals and healthcare system are under extensive pressure amid surging COVID.

The Post reported that Shandong and neighboring Jiangsu province had sent at least 500 doctors and nurses to Beijing hospitals despite healthcare workforce shortages in their regions, to support fighting the worst COVID outbreak Beijing has faced in the past three years.

Due to sudden rising infections, China’s medical system is under tremendous pressure. With China’s top medical resource, Beijing still seeks outside help, showing how fragile its healthcare system is amid an unprecedented coronavirus wave.

Leaked documents showed that the State Council had asked Shandong and Hunan provinces to send healthcare workers, which included 178 critical care specialists, to help Beijing.

One leaked document even noted, “The trip should not be publicly advertised.” 

The Post learned that even though hospitals are understaffed due to most workers being infected with the virus, they must send their resources to help the capital city.

A doctor in Nanjing told the South China Morning Post that her hospital faces severe understaffing. To prevent hospital operations from collapsing, her hospital instructed its departments to guarantee appropriate personnel in the emergency room, ICU, fever clinic, and maternity unit.

China’s capital has been hit by a surge in positive cases since the abrupt relaxation of COVID measures earlier this month. The public has complained about drug and test kit shortages, long lines at fever clinics, and the mounting death toll.

Pharmacies also need more medicines for the disease due to sudden demand.The Financial Times reported that provincial authorities across China had requisitioned COVID medical supplies to deal with coronavirus infections in their regions. Multiple medical firms’ production now focuses on providing the regime’s demand rather than fulfilling private orders.

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