90% ‘Fully’ Vaxxed China Expected to Suffer ‘1 Million’ COVID Deaths Through 2023: Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME)

China is 90.2% “fully” vaccinated against COVID-19, according to Google data, while 92.4% of the country’s citizens have received at least one dose of the drug.

Nevertheless, new projections from the U.S.-based Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) show China is facing “an explosion of cases and over a million deaths through 2023.”

IHMA estimates that the number of cases in China will reach a peak around April 1, with deaths expected to reach approximately 322,000. It is projected that approximately one-third of China’s population will have been infected by this point, according to the Director of IHME, Christopher Murray.

If the projections are accurate, China’s death toll from COVID-19 will be comparable to the United States, where over 1.1 million people have died due to the disease since the start of the pandemic.

IHMA uses data on vaccination rates from the Chinese government, along with assumptions about how different provinces will respond to rising infection rates, to inform its forecasts.

Per China’s state-run Global Times:

Multiple places across China are anticipating and getting prepared to cope with the peak of COVID-19 infections in January, as a travel rush during the Chinese New Year holidays is expected to speed up the spread of the virus, according to media reports on Sunday.   

Local authorities in East China's Zhejiang Province said on Sunday that the first COVID-19 flare-up may reach its peak in the province around mid-January, but an early arrival of the peak cannot be ruled out, citing several research models at home and abroad, yicai.com reported on Sunday. 

The epidemic prevention and control authorities in East China's Jiangxi Province on Thursday also predicted that the peak period of the next flare-up in the province will arrive between the end of December and early January, with the peak expected around the Chinese New Year holidays according to experts' analysis, yicai.com reported.

Multiple places, including East China's Shandong Province, Yichang in Central's China's Hubei Province and Cangnan county in East China's Zhejiang Province have also predicted their peak of COVID-19 infections to arrive next month, according to the report.