Policy & Recommendations

Impact of surge in China COVID-19 cases on epidemiological situation in EU/EEA

ECDC, together with the EU/EEA Member States and the European Commission has increased its monitoring activities and will revise risk assessments and adjust actions if needed. ECDC is working closely with the World Health Organization (WHO)/Europe and WHO/Headquarters and is in regular contact with the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC) and major CDCs globally.

ECDC continues to routinely monitor and report on emerging SARS-CoV-2 variant threats via its Strategic Analysis of Variants in Europe (SAVE) Working Group, where variants and epidemiological trends in countries neighbouring China as well as in the EU/EEA will continue to be evaluated.

The number of COVID-19 cases has reached a record high in mainland China, peaking on 2 December 2022. In the past three weeks, incidence has fallen, likely also due to a lower number of tests being carried out, resulting in fewer infections being detected. There continues to be a lack of reliable data on COVID-19 cases, hospital admissions, deaths as well as Intensive Care Unit (ICU) capacity and occupancy in China. High levels of SARS-CoV-2 infections and increased pressure on healthcare services in China are expected in the coming weeks due to low population immunity and the relaxation of non-pharmaceutical interventions.