Top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci has urged China to release the medical records of nine people whose ailments might provide vital clues into whether COVID-19 first emerged as the result of a lab leak, the Financial Times reported
Top U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci has urged China to release the medical records of nine people whose illness might provide vital clues into whether COVID-19 first emerged as the result of a lab leak, the Financial Times reported on Thursday.
"I would like to see the medical records of the three people who are reported to have got sick in 2019. Did they really get sick, and if so, what did they get sick with?" FT quoted Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAD) as saying.
Fauci said that the records could help resolve the debate over the origins of a disease that has killed more than 3.5m people worldwide.
The medical records pertain to 3 researchers at a Chinese virology laboratory in Wuhan who reportedly fell seriously ill with pneumonia like symptoms in 2019 a month before the first COVID-19 cases were reported.
In 2012, six miners mysteriously fell sick with pneumonia-like symptoms after entering the mine to clear bat guano — three of them later died. The copper mine they were working at in the mountains of the district of Tongguan in China’s southwestern province of Yunnan and the bats that inhabit it are now a focal point of lab leak theory.
The lab-leak theory regarding the novel coronavirus - that it escaped from a lab in China’s Wuhan (intentionally or otherwise) - has suddenly gained traction more than a year after it was declared a ‘conspiracy theory’ by the United States mainstream media, debunked by top scientists including that Fauci and censored by the tech-giants like Twitter, Facebook et al.
Fauci’s position has changed since May last year when he had rejected the claims that the virus came from a lab or that it was man-made. Later, it came to light that National Institutes of Health (NIH) which Fauci has led since 1984 had funded the Wuhan Institute of Virology via the nonprofit EcoHealth Alliance (led by Dr Peter Daszak) to the tune of $600,000 over a period of five years.
The grant was provided to ‘study the transmission of coronaviruses from bats to humans to better understand the SARS-CoV-1 epidemic in the early 2000s.’
As Fauci came under intense scrutiny over the last one month where he was grilled by US lawmakers in multiple hearings, he stated that he wasn’t convinced (anymore) of the natural origin theory of Covid-19 virus and ‘I think we should continue to investigate what went on in China until we continue to find out to the best of our ability what happened.’