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China did not count coronavirus positives if patient had no symptoms: report

China did not include asymptomatic individuals who tested positive for coronavirus in their counts as the number of confirmed cases and deaths from the disease grew worldwide, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.

A Chinese public health official told the Journal on Tuesday that the country will start reporting asymptomatic carriers starting Wednesday “in order to respond to society’s concern in a timely manner.” 

Chang Jile said there are 1,541 asymptomatic carriers of the coronavirus in China; of that group, 205 people recently returned from overseas.

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From now on, all asymptomatic carriers will be forced into a 14-day quarantine, the official added.

China’s reported numbers, which steeply declined from being the epicenter of the pandemic to the fourth-highest in terms of total confirmed cases, have been met with skepticism.

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioThe imminent crises facing Joe Biden Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey signs daylight savings bill Study: Early unemployment cutoff would cost 16M people 0B MORE (R-Fla.), for example, tweeted Friday that cases of COVID-19 in China are "significantly more than [what] they admit to."

China currently has more than 80,000 confirmed cases of the virus, compared to 164,000 in the U.S., according to a Johns Hopkins University database.