Agence France-Presse has this dispatch from China this morning, which says the nation is veering from compulsion to persuasion in its attempt to inoculate its population with Covid.
So far, the country has administered about 140 million doses since vaccinations began last year and aims to fully inoculate 40 percent of its 1.4 billion people by June.
But as seen in other countries when the number of cases begins to drop, many in China have been slow to sign up for injections, feeling they are no longer at risk of contracting the virus, as the country has largely controlled the infections. national outbreaks.
China reported only 11 cases of domestic transmission today. Life has largely returned to normal in most parts of the country, where most shopping malls, nightclubs, and amusement parks have been open for a year.
Eager to meet vaccination targets, local officials have had to get creative. The walls along the narrow alleys of Beijing’s Xicheng district are now covered in green, yellow and red signs, indicating the vaccination rate of people who work and live in roadside shops and courtyard houses.
“I feel like it’s a bit strange,” said Wang Ying, a barista at a cafe who had received a red sign right outside his door, the lowest vaccination rate of less than 40 percent. “Originally I thought vaccination should be based on individual wishes, but now it seems like everyone should get vaccinated.”
Wang told AFP that she had reservations about the safety of the vaccines, but that she and her colleagues would eventually receive injections. “In the food and beverage business, doing it will make everyone feel more comfortable,” he said.
Meanwhile, Daxing, a suburban district of Beijing, is handing out shopping vouchers to people who have received the two full doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.
Neighborhood committees in another district have promised boxes of eggs to older residents who have been vaccinated, while others who receive their vaccine have been promised free visits to the popular Lama Temple tourist site.
But elsewhere, Chinese authorities and employers have opted for coercion rather than persuasion to vaccinate millions of people.
Officials in southwest China’s Yunnan Province, which recently discovered a small outbreak, launched a push last week to vaccinate all residents of Ruili City within five days, state media reported.
It is unclear how easy it will be to opt out of the coup in the city, which borders Muse in neighboring Myanmar, where escalating unrest since the February military coup has raised fears that people may try to cross into China if the violence escalates.