(c) Zooming in with Simone Gao
On Feb. 12, Hubei health authorities announced an additional 14,840 cases of the coronavirus. It marks the largest single-day rise since the epidemic began and is almost 10 times the number of added cases from the day before. Health authorities said the spike was due to the inclusion of “clinically diagnosed cases” in Hubei. Others suspect the true reason is because of a recent change in top leadership in Hubei province and Wuhan city, as these two Xi Jinping appointees seek to avoid taking responsibility for their predecessors’ incompetence and concealment of the epidemic. To decode these events, Zooming In did a thorough case study of one of China’s most popular media outlet’s coverage of the coronavirus epidemic. We also did a preliminary calculation of the infected population and death toll in Wuhan based on an exclusive investigation by the Epoch Media Group into one of Wuhan’s funeral homes. From there, we will explore the truth of the epidemic, how Chinese leadership view it, their plan going forward and most importantly, what it means for you if the epidemic in China is 10 times worse than reported.