As the city’s strict Covid-19 rules limit access to healthcare and generate dissatisfaction and fear, Shanghai citizens have turned to the internet for grassroots guidance on medical treatment.
Those suffering from other medical ailments express requests for help on mutual help platforms and social media chat groups, while the city of 25 million has deployed lockdowns and thorough testing to combat the disease.
One woman said she went online for advice because she was concerned about her paralyzed mother contracting an infection from a urine catheter she had been using for about a month.
“Normally, replacing the catheter takes 10 minutes, but the adjacent hospital where we typically go is currently closed,” the woman, who only wanted to be known by her surname Zhou, explained.
Some patients report difficulty obtaining transportation or obtaining permission to leave residential communities even when care is available.
While the government of China’s business capital pushed hospitals in March to create “green channels” for non-Covid patients in need of urgent care, such as dialysis or cancer treatment, many people have still had difficulty getting treatment.