Shanghai is at the center of the latest outbreak, reporting upwards of 10,000 new cases a day.Authorities have responded with a city-wide lockdown that has lasted weeks, confining nearly all 25 million residents of the once-bustling financial hub to their homes or neighborhoods. Meanwhile, Beijing officials have launched mass testing exercises, shut schools and imposed targeted lockdowns on some residential buildings in a bid to rein in infections. Those actions have sparked fears of a wider lockdown similar to Shanghai's.
Throughout the pandemic, China has stuck to a strict zero-Covid strategy that uses lockdowns, mass testing, quarantines, and border closures to contain the virus. But the arrival of the highly infectious Omicron variant has thrown the sustainability of that strategy into question, with the virus spreading to different cities and provinces faster than the government can contain it. Authorities are now enforcing full or partial lockdowns in at least 27 cities across the country, with these restrictions affecting up to 165 million people, according to CNN's calculations.
Here's what you need to know about the Covid situation in China.