Simone McCarthy

Hong Kong

Simone McCarthy

Reporter, China

Simone McCarthy joined the Post in 2018. She previously wrote about China tech, business and society for SupChina and has a bachelor's in literature from Yale University and a master's from Columbia Journalism School.

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Latest from Simone McCarthy

China scientists link Covid-19 measures to fall in other infections

Researchers in Guangdong province have identified a dramatic reduction in other infectious diseases during the pandemic.

Researchers in Guangdong province have identified a dramatic reduction in other infectious diseases during the pandemic.

China scientists link Covid-19 measures to fall in other infections
18 Oct 2021 - 6:56PM
Science turns nasty in Covid-19 origins argument on Twitter

It was already a battleground for those in the ‘zoonati’ camp versus the lab-leak proponents – then came documents from a purported whistle-blower that started another frenzy over bat virus research in China.

It was already a battleground for those in the ‘zoonati’ camp versus the lab-leak proponents – then came documents from a purported whistle-blower that started another frenzy over bat virus research in China.

Science turns nasty in Covid-19 origins argument on Twitter
15 Oct 2021 - 5:18PM
China urges ‘objective, scientific’ focus for WHO’s next Covid-19 origins hunt

Foreign ministry vows country will ‘continue to support and participate in’ global origins tracing, and ‘oppose any political manipulation’.

Foreign ministry vows country will ‘continue to support and participate in’ global origins tracing, and ‘oppose any political manipulation’.

China urges ‘objective, scientific’ focus for WHO’s next Covid-19 origins hunt
14 Oct 2021 - 11:23PM
Explainer | ‘It may be our last chance’: new Sago science group is WHO’s push to find the origins of Covid-19

‘All of the scientists joining this process understand [the] external pressures, and the scrutiny and the visibility,’ WHO official says of 26-person group.

‘All of the scientists joining this process understand [the] external pressures, and the scrutiny and the visibility,’ WHO official says of 26-person group.

‘It may be our last chance’: new Sago science group is WHO’s push to find the origins of Covid-19
14 Oct 2021 - 10:24PM
Coronavirus: WHO names new team of scientists to take over origins probe

The 26 experts from countries including China, the US, India and Kenya are members of a permanent advisory body known as Sago.

The 26 experts from countries including China, the US, India and Kenya are members of a permanent advisory body known as Sago.

Coronavirus: WHO names new team of scientists to take over origins probe
14 Oct 2021 - 12:28AM
As more countries ditch ‘zero-Covid’ policy, why is China opting to ‘wait and see’?

As more countries move towards a “living with Covid” strategy, China, which pioneered controlling Covid-19 with lockdown orders and tight border rules, will remain in a “wait and see” mode when it comes to adjusting its zero-tolerance policy. South China Morning Post reporter Simone McCarthy, who has been covering China’s response to the pandemic since early 2020, unpacks China’s strategy with the Post's Alkira Reinfrank.

As more countries move towards a “living with Covid” strategy, China, which pioneered controlling Covid-19 with lockdown orders and tight border rules, will remain in a “wait and see” mode when it comes to adjusting its zero-tolerance policy. South China Morning Post reporter Simone McCarthy, who has been covering China’s response to the pandemic since early 2020, unpacks China’s strategy with the Post's Alkira Reinfrank.

As more countries ditch ‘zero-Covid’ policy, why is China opting to ‘wait and see’?
20 Oct 2021 - 10:46AM
WHO group backs third Covid-19 shot for elderly vaccinated with Sinovac or Sinopharm

SAGE says extra dose is not a booster shot but an extension of the main vaccination course.

SAGE says extra dose is not a booster shot but an extension of the main vaccination course.

WHO group backs third Covid-19 shot for elderly vaccinated with Sinovac or Sinopharm
12 Oct 2021 - 9:45PM
Scaffolding collapses as heavy wind and rains lash Hong Kong amid typhoon warning

At least one person was killed when bamboo scaffolding that had completely surrounded a 30-storey residential block in Hong Kong’s Happy Valley collapsed during a heavy rainstorm. The fringes of tropical storm Lionrock lashed Hong Kong on October 8, 2021, prompting the city’s highest-level ‘black’ rainstorm alert and a No 3 strong wind signal signal. 

At least one person was killed when bamboo scaffolding that had completely surrounded a 30-storey residential block in Hong Kong’s Happy Valley collapsed during a heavy rainstorm. The fringes of tropical storm Lionrock lashed Hong Kong on October 8, 2021, prompting the city’s highest-level ‘black’ rainstorm alert and a No 3 strong wind signal signal. 

Scaffolding collapses as heavy wind and rains lash Hong Kong amid typhoon warning
8 Oct 2021 - 4:27PM
Coronavirus: Other countries are giving up ‘Covid zero’. China wants to wait and see

Chinese CDC chief Gao Fu says new strategy is being discussed and ‘everything is dynamic’ but it’s too soon to view the disease as endemic.

Chinese CDC chief Gao Fu says new strategy is being discussed and ‘everything is dynamic’ but it’s too soon to view the disease as endemic.

Coronavirus: Other countries are giving up ‘Covid zero’. China wants to wait and see
13 Oct 2021 - 7:20PM
Hong Kong typhoon: warning rises to No 8 after deadly scaffolding collapse at residential building

One hundred emergency personnel comb through the debris at Happy Valley, pulling another worker to safety, while two drivers manage to free themselves.

One hundred emergency personnel comb through the debris at Happy Valley, pulling another worker to safety, while two drivers manage to free themselves.

Hong Kong typhoon: warning rises to No 8 after deadly scaffolding collapse at residential building
9 Oct 2021 - 6:54AM
A year on, proposal to waive IP for Covid-19 vaccines is still in limbo

It has the support of more than 100 nations, including China, but a handful of opponents again blocked its path at a WTO meeting on Monday.

It has the support of more than 100 nations, including China, but a handful of opponents again blocked its path at a WTO meeting on Monday.

A year on, proposal to waive IP for Covid-19 vaccines is still in limbo
5 Oct 2021 - 10:03PM
Chinese scientists say wild animals should be screened for coronavirus to cut risk of deadly variants being transmitted back to humans

A paper co-written by Gao Fu, the head of the country’s CDC, warns of the ongoing risk of mutations in species that are susceptible to the virus.

A paper co-written by Gao Fu, the head of the country’s CDC, warns of the ongoing risk of mutations in species that are susceptible to the virus.

Chinese scientists say wild animals should be screened for coronavirus to cut risk of deadly variants being transmitted back to humans
3 Oct 2021 - 8:17PM
Coronavirus: Pfizer booster may better protect than third CoronaVac shot, finds Turkish study

Researchers at Manisa Celal Bayar University studied several hundred health workers vaccinated with CoronaVac, with boosters beginning in July.

Researchers at Manisa Celal Bayar University studied several hundred health workers vaccinated with CoronaVac, with boosters beginning in July.

Coronavirus: Pfizer booster may better protect than third CoronaVac shot, finds Turkish study
2 Oct 2021 - 10:51PM
China defends role in Covid-19 origins hunt as pressure mounts for more research

Xinhua report says Beijing gave all necessary help to international scientists hoping to find out where the coronavirus began.

Xinhua report says Beijing gave all necessary help to international scientists hoping to find out where the coronavirus began.

China defends role in Covid-19 origins hunt as pressure mounts for more research
29 Sep 2021 - 9:45PM
Wuhan lab and web of Chinese red tape that delayed US scientists getting access to coronavirus

Emails show Galveston National Laboratory scientists urged counterparts to share the virus in early 2020 to speed up vital research but hit a bureaucratic wall.

Emails show Galveston National Laboratory scientists urged counterparts to share the virus in early 2020 to speed up vital research but hit a bureaucratic wall.

Wuhan lab and web of Chinese red tape that delayed US scientists getting access to coronavirus
27 Sep 2021 - 8:55PM
Supporters of Canada’s ‘two Michaels’ Spavor and Kovrig express relief but condemn China’s ‘arbitrary detention’

Release comes hours after Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou returns to China.

Release comes hours after Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou returns to China.

Supporters of Canada’s ‘two Michaels’ Spavor and Kovrig express relief but condemn China’s ‘arbitrary detention’
26 Sep 2021 - 12:30AM
Covid-19 origins: Chinese study uncovers over 140 bat coronaviruses but says none linked to pandemic

Since January 2020, team has tested samples from 4,700 bats in regions across the country, finding close relationship with Sars but not Covid-19.

Since January 2020, team has tested samples from 4,700 bats in regions across the country, finding close relationship with Sars but not Covid-19.

Covid-19 origins: Chinese study uncovers over 140 bat coronaviruses but says none linked to pandemic
21 Sep 2021 - 11:55PM
Bat viruses found in Laos ‘closest known ancestors’ to pandemic strain

Researchers say three coronaviruses identified in horseshoe bats in the north of the country share key similarity with Sars-CoV-2.

Researchers say three coronaviruses identified in horseshoe bats in the north of the country share key similarity with Sars-CoV-2.

Bat viruses found in Laos ‘closest known ancestors’ to pandemic strain
20 Sep 2021 - 7:59PM
Chinese Covid-19 vaccines: Sinopharm is safe for children as young as 3, says study

The data was released as a fresh cluster of cases in primary school children has intensified the debate about vaccinating under-12s.

The data was released as a fresh cluster of cases in primary school children has intensified the debate about vaccinating under-12s.

Chinese Covid-19 vaccines: Sinopharm is safe for children as young as 3, says study
17 Sep 2021 - 9:56PM
China reports highest single-day rise in Fujian’s Delta outbreak

Control measures stepped up as 61 new cases bring total to 270, with infection spreading to another city in the province.

Control measures stepped up as 61 new cases bring total to 270, with infection spreading to another city in the province.

China reports highest single-day rise in Fujian’s Delta outbreak
17 Sep 2021 - 9:56PM
‘It’s only a matter of time’: bat-human virus spillovers may be very common, study finds

Researchers say hundreds of thousands of people might be infected with the bat pathogens each year.

Researchers say hundreds of thousands of people might be infected with the bat pathogens each year.

‘It’s only a matter of time’: bat-human virus spillovers may be very common, study finds
16 Sep 2021 - 10:29PM
Delta outbreak in China’s Fujian puts more than 50 children in hospital isolation

DC says the outbreak might have started with a man infected during centralised quarantine rather than someone bringing it into the country.

DC says the outbreak might have started with a man infected during centralised quarantine rather than someone bringing it into the country.

Delta outbreak in China’s Fujian puts more than 50 children in hospital isolation
17 Sep 2021 - 3:18PM
Explainer | Coronavirus: Did the US fund risky research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology?

New details about US-financed research in China spurs discussion about gain of function research and what risks are acceptable.

New details about US-financed research in China spurs discussion about gain of function research and what risks are acceptable.

Coronavirus: Did the US fund risky research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology?
16 Sep 2021 - 5:59PM
Delta vaccine: Chinese researchers find Sinovac booster aids immune response to devastating variant

A number of countries are considering boosters or authorising them for certain groups amid the battle against the Delta variant.

A number of countries are considering boosters or authorising them for certain groups amid the battle against the Delta variant.

Delta vaccine: Chinese researchers find Sinovac booster aids immune response to devastating variant
7 Sep 2021 - 9:56PM
Do claims the coronavirus spread to China via frozen food merit serious investigation?

Some scientists in China have called for the WHO to investigate the cold chain theory, but it has been greeted with scepticism overseas.

Some scientists in China have called for the WHO to investigate the cold chain theory, but it has been greeted with scepticism overseas.

Do claims the coronavirus spread to China via frozen food merit serious investigation?
6 Sep 2021 - 11:17PM
US-China tensions over ‘lab leak’ theory hamper hunt for Covid-19 origins

Scientists call for less politics, more answers as multiple theories remain in play nearly two years after the virus emerged.

Scientists call for less politics, more answers as multiple theories remain in play nearly two years after the virus emerged.

US-China tensions over ‘lab leak’ theory hamper hunt for Covid-19 origins
3 Sep 2021 - 10:19PM
WHO starts data-sharing effort to prevent pandemics. Will nations cooperate?

Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence aims to pool disease data, and produce tools to predict outbreaks, but is reliant on countries taking part.

Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence aims to pool disease data, and produce tools to predict outbreaks, but is reliant on countries taking part.

WHO starts data-sharing effort to prevent pandemics. Will nations cooperate?
2 Sep 2021 - 10:16PM
Political rows hamper Covid-19 origins hunt but more China research is a top priority, says senior WHO official

The global health body’s Covid-19 lead Maria Van Kerkhove says it wants to ‘bring it back to the science’ as Washington and Beijing continue to trade barbs.

The global health body’s Covid-19 lead Maria Van Kerkhove says it wants to ‘bring it back to the science’ as Washington and Beijing continue to trade barbs.

Political rows hamper Covid-19 origins hunt but more China research is a top priority, says senior WHO official
29 Aug 2021 - 12:07PM
Chinese 3-shot Covid-19 vaccine maker says trials show it is nearly 82 per cent effective

Chongqing Zhifei Biological Products says in an exchange filing that the product has a near-78 per cent efficacy rate against the Delta variant.

Chongqing Zhifei Biological Products says in an exchange filing that the product has a near-78 per cent efficacy rate against the Delta variant.

Chinese 3-shot Covid-19 vaccine maker says trials show it is nearly 82 per cent effective
28 Aug 2021 - 10:46PM
US investigation of Covid-19 origins fails to reach conclusive assessment

Intelligence community analysts trying to determine Covid-19’s origins remained divided about whether the virus came from a lab leak or jumped from an animal reservoir to humans naturally.

Intelligence community analysts trying to determine Covid-19’s origins remained divided about whether the virus came from a lab leak or jumped from an animal reservoir to humans naturally.

US investigation of Covid-19 origins fails to reach conclusive assessment
28 Aug 2021 - 11:12PM