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Heading To China? You'll Need An Anal Swab First
If you have plans to visit China, you may have to get a COVID-19 test… in your derrière.
Government officials are allegedly making anal COVID-19 swabs mandatory for all foreign travelers arriving in the country claiming that such tests “provide a higher degree of accuracy” compared to other screening methods, the Times UK reported.
Testing hubs will be in Shanghai and Beijing. According to the Chinese Center for Disease Control, the test is performed with a sterile cotton swab that’s inserted about 2 inches into the anus before being gently rotated out.
And as one can imagine, people are not happy with China’s decision. Japan is asking China to stop performing such exams because swabs are causing psychological trauma.
“Some Japanese reported to our embassy in China that they received anal swab tests, which caused a great psychological pain,” Katsunobu Kato, Japan’s chief cabinet secretary, told a news conference.
In February, Vice reported that China agreed to stop giving anal tests to U.S. diplomats in China.
But China is defending its decision.
The tests are “in accordance with the changes in the epidemic situation as well as relevant laws and regulations,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Wang Wenbin.
The World Health Organization recommends testing respiratory tract specimens, where possible, to diagnose respiratory diseases because they give the best samples.
“Fecal samples may offer an alternative testing material, especially in patients with gastrointestinal symptoms,” spokesman Christian Lindmeier told Reuters, adding that the tests are “less likely than respiratory samples to be positive in the first week of symptoms.”