Due to a new surge of COVID-19 cases, the Chinese city of Xi’an has been on a complete lockdown since December 23. Taking into account the length of the lockdown so far, as well as the city’s population of over 13 million, this is now the longest COVID lockdown in China since the virus first emerged in Wuhan in 2020. As the lockdown drags on, the city’s residents are beginning to grow concerned and frustrated.
Many Xi’an residents have taken to Chinese social media to complain about the state of things, with a common topic being the growing difficulty of obtaining food, household necessities, and medical supplies. A meme of sorts has sprung up around videos about how to prepare cabbage, as cabbage has become one of the only foods still widely available.
Multiple hospitals in the city have been forced to temporarily shutter due to a lack of resources caused by both the lockdown and widespread testing efforts. As such, hospitals have been turning away those who aren’t confirmed COVID-negative to ensure their the virus doesn’t proliferate through their existing patients.
Xi’an residents complain of food shortages as lockdown drags on https://t.co/ZtFhRJiyIY pic.twitter.com/UCqxYeYcCG
— The Times Of India (@timesofindia) December 30, 2021
One incident that has drawn significant condemnation from the populace occurred at one of Xi’an’s few open hospitals. An unidentified woman attempted to enter one of the operating hospitals, as she was eight months pregnant, but she was turned away because her most recent COVID-19 test (which was negative) was out of date by just two hours. The woman was forced to wait outside the hospital to have a COVID test administered, and ended up miscarrying. This incident has earned scorn from Xi’an’s populace, and the Women’s Federation and health commission of Shaanxi province have opened an investigation into the hospital’s conduct.