The cover story of China News Weekly put together a detailed timeline for the month leading up to 23 January 2020, the day that the city of Wuhan closed down. The story presented the local government’s response and what officials from the local and national Center for Disease Control and Prevention did in those critical early weeks, questioning if a decision to downplay the outbreak was made.
This story by Renwu Magazine sets out how Ai Fen became the first whistleblower. Ai Fen is a doctor at the Central Hospital of Wuhan. In December 2019, she was one of the first doctors to encounter patients infected with the virus that would become known as COVID-19. On 30 December, she received a diagnostic report of a suspected COVID patient, which she showed to an ophthalmologist at the hospital named Li Wenliang. Li then shared the report on the Chinese messaging application WeChat. After the report was widely distributed, Ai Fen was questioned by hospital superiors. Ai Fen also disclosed to reporters some details about the response of relevant departments in the early stage of the epidemic, including the deliberate suppression of information by hospitals and higher authorities.