coronavirus mulhouse, The desire of public officials to downplay serious outbreaks of disease is a frequent historical occurrence – and it’s almost always deadly. Officials may hope by their actions to prevent panic, serious economic disruption, or political instability. But measures to suppress the truth about epidemics typically fail in their objectives, while hastening the spread of disease. This human frailty, exacerbated by the suffocating dynamics of authoritarian regimes, was illustrated in the Chinese Communist Party’s disastrous response to SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) in 2003. In the early weeks of that epidemic, the Communist Party claimed falsely that the outbreak in Guangdong Province was under “effective control.”
coronavirus mulhouse - Yet the disease was still spreading, and secrecy within the Chinese Communist Party itself delayed the government’s response. An early internal report on the disease went unread for three days because it was labeled “top secret.” Rivalry between the military and political factions of the Chinese Community Party hindered its response yet further. The Communist Party only responded strongly to the SARS outbreak after weeks of growing panic, disruptions and death. It started by firing its top health ministers.
coronavirus mulhouse, China is now learning anew the consequences of wishful thinking and secrecy when facing a deadly illness. The disastrous spread of coronavirus will surely take a toll on the party’s credibility in the eyes of the Chinese people – as it should. But the Chinese government is still the central actor in this drama, and it can still play a constructive role in mitigating harm to the world from this coronavirus. CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR OUR OPINION NEWSLETTER First, China must cooperate with world health authorities to combat the disease and allow international experts – including teams from the United States – to work and conduct research at the center of the epidemic in Hubei province.
coronavirus mulhouse - Outside experts are most likely to provide the impartial analysis necessary to respond to coronavirus because only they are free from conflicts of interest and fear of censorship. The American offer to send medical experts and scientists to Wuhan still stands. Second, the Chinese Communist Party must give the Chinese people more freedom to speak their minds and share information about the disease, however damaging or distressing to the regime. CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP This is essential for scientists, doctors and first responders, who must be free to speak candidly and creatively to identify problems in the government’s response and test solutions. But this is also important for ordinary Chinese, who become more suspicious of their government and less likely to obey its edicts the more they think it is hiding the full extent of the epidemic.
coronavirus mulhouse - It’s worth noting that the Chinese government already has laws on the books that prohibit “concealing, misreporting, or delaying” evidence of infectious disease epidemics. To fight coronavirus, it ought to apply this very sensible lesson to itself as well. CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY SEN. TOM COTTON