Shanghai: Authorities fire four officials after elderly patient blunder
Chinese district authorities fired four personnel after an elderly patient from a Shanghai care facility was thought to be dead and placed in a hearse.
In video footage from Sunday, two people who appear to be mortuary staff can be seen carrying the body bag onto a car.
The workers are later seen opening the bag, with one of them declaring that the patient is still alive.
The incident has sparked widespread indignation on Chinese social media.
Shanghai’s Putuo district confirmed the incident late Monday, saying the patient had been taken to the hospital and was in good health.
According to district officials, five officials and one doctor are being probed. Among the four employees sacked were the deputy director of the local civil affairs department and the director of the care facility. A doctor with simply the surname Tian had his medical licence revoked as well.
The patient’s identity is still unknown. Many people condemned the incident online, with Hu Xijing, the former state news editor-in-chief, calling it a “serious breach of duty that almost resulted in death.”
It was a sign of Shanghai’s “chaos,” according to another commentator on the Chinese social media site Weibo.
Shanghai, China’s most populated city, has already entered its sixth week of limitations intended to lower COVID cases, which began to climb again in March.
The majority of people are still forbidden from leaving their homes for any reason, and those infected with COVID and their close relatives must report to a state-run quarantine centre. On the video, there have been clashes between police and homeowners who are being evicted from their homes.
According to reports, there were signs that Shanghai officials were having trouble coping with the outbreak.
China is one of the last countries committed to eradicating Covid, in contrast to the rest of the world, which is attempting to live with the virus.