A graphic video showing the procedure of anal swab testing for COVID1-19 went viral as China made the anal COVID-19 swabs compulsory for all foreign travelers visiting the country. The testing hubs would be set up at Beijing and Shanghai airports.
The controversial method of testing shot into limelight after American diplomats visiting the country were made to undergo the tests in the month of February. Recently, Japan too objected to the test citing it as "undignified" procedure.
Anal Swab Testing Video Receives Over 3 Million Views
The video shared by Dr David Samadi shows a paramedic giving the demonstration on conducting the anal swab testing on a dummy. "Just a reminder of what China's anal swab test for COVID looks like. They have now made it mandatory for every foreign arrival into the country. I can tell you one place I won't be going soon," the tweet read. It has been viewed over 3.2 million times since it was uploaded.
According to China's National Health Commission, the 10-second procedure involves inserting a cotton swab about three to five centimeters into the anus. Once inside, the swab is gently rotated to gather the sample. The swab is removed before being placed inside a sample container.
"OMG that is the grossest thing I've seen in a long time! I feel sorry for business people that have to travel there," tweeted a user.
"I have zero medical expertise but I suspect this must be for subjugation and demoralization," commented another user.
Chinese Call Anal-Swab Test Scientific
In its report The Times stated that the Chinese government backs the new method of testing by claiming it to be more accurate as compared to the other testing methods. As part of the new travel requirement, there will be testing hubs in Beijing and Shanghai airports, the outlet reported.
Earlier raising an objection to the new testing procedure, Japan had asked China to stop the procedure as it caused mental anguish to the travelers. "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, had disclosed during a press conference.
Li Tongzeng, a respiratory disease medic, told the state media that the anal swabs are better because virus traces stay longer in fecal samples than they do in the nose or throat.
Defending the screening method as science-based, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said: "The tests are in accordance with the changes in the epidemic situation as well as relevant laws and regulations."