Oh sh*t. ‘Anal swabs for COVID more accurate,’ sez Chinese expert

More than a million Beijing residents undergoing coronavirus testing amid a fresh outbreak have been administered anal swabs, which are considered more accurate and raise the chances of detecting COVID-19, said a Chinese disease specialist. The key districts of Daxing and Dongcheng began a mass testing drive on Friday after a nine-year-old boy tested positive for the more virulent strain of the virus, first discovered in London and the southeast of England last month. Health authorities in the Chinese capital said they were aiming to screen more than two million people in 48 hours. Among them, around 1.6 million inhabitants in Daxing were to be given antibody tests, as well as throat, nasal and rectal nucleic acid swabs. Anal swabs have been in use since last year, including in the major port city of Shanghai, but the method is so far reserved for individuals in potential COVID-19 hotspots, according to an infectious disease expert quoted by China’s state broadcaster CCTV on…