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China punishes officials after woman miscarries outside lockdown hospital

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China punishes officials after woman miscarries outside lockdown hospital


China’s historic city of Xi’an has been under strict home confinement for two weeks as Beijing sticks to its “zero-Covid” strategy – Copyright AFP STR

Chinese authorities said Thursday they have punished officials after footage went viral of an eight-month pregnant woman miscarrying in the locked-down city of Xi’an when a hospital refused her entry without a Covid test.

The historic city of 13 million has been under strict home confinement for two weeks as Beijing sticks to its “zero-Covid” strategy to stamp out all virus cases.

The distressing incident was detailed in a social media post by the woman’s niece on January 1, which included photos and video of the woman sitting on a plastic stool outside the hospital surrounded by a pool of blood.

The post was later removed but first gathered hundreds of millions of views and sparked widespread anger online about the hardships some Xi’an residents are facing in the locked-down megacity.

The city government said in a statement Thursday the incident at Xi’an Gaoxin Hospital had aroused “widespread concern and caused a bad social impact” and the local health bureau was investigating.

The hospital’s general manager had been suspended and “relevant responsible persons” at the outpatient department were removed from their posts, it said.

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The city’s health commission had also instructed the hospital to “apologise to the public, actively reflect, and sort out hidden dangers in the work process”.

“A warning” was given to the head of Xi’an’s emergency response team and the health commission director, the statement said, adding that they did not “meet the requirements for the treatment of special populations”.

Posted on the city government’s official WeChat account, the statement racked up more than 290 million views within hours of being published — illustrating the huge interest the case has generated within China.

According to the January 1 post that went viral, staff refused to admit the heavily pregnant woman for two hours because she did not have a negative Covid test within the last 48 hours.

Her niece wrote that she did hold a negative test result, but that it had expired by just a few hours.

AFP could not verify the post, and calls to the hospital went unanswered.

On Wednesday, officials told reporters that Xi’an was opening “green channels” to provide quick access to medical services to certain groups — such as pregnant women and patients with critical illnesses — without referencing this case.

Coronavirus cases in China remain very low by international standards. But in recent weeks, infections have reached a high not seen since March 2020.

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There were 189 cases reported Thursday, including 63 in Xi’an.



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YouTube Announces New Targeting Options for CTV Campaigns, Improved CTV Buying Tools

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YouTube TV Reaches 5 Million Subscribers

Connected TV has become a key video consumption trend, with YouTube reporting that CTV viewing – i.e. people watching YouTube content on their home TV sets – is now its fastest-growing content surface.

And with that comes new opportunity for advertisers, with the capacity to run TV-like ad campaigns for much lower cost, and with much more specific targeting, which could be hugely effective in building brand awareness and recognition.

And now, YouTube’s looking to provide more options on this front, with the addition of specific audience ‘guarantees’ for video campaigns, as well as improved processes for buying CTV inventory.

First off, on audience guarantees. Using Nielsen Digital Ad Ratings (DAR) YouTube will now give advertisers the opportunity to maximize audience reach among specific target markets, based on vetted audience reach insights, in order to maximize your messaging.  

As explained by Google:

When setting up your guaranteed deal, you can now choose a specific age and gender demographic, like adults ages 18 to 49, and pay only for the ad impressions that reach your target audience as measured by Nielsen DAR. This feature works for all types of video campaigns – including for connected TV ads – and comes at no additional cost for advertisers.

The option essentially provides more control for your campaigns, in terms of exact audience reach. Nielsen’s DAR insights incorporate census-based data, advanced machine learning methodologies, and third-party datasets, to facilitate deduplicated insights to specific consumer segments, helping to ensure that you’re reaching exactly the right people with your ads.

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That could be a big help, especially for brands that are looking to measure the resonance of their campaigns with specific audience subsets.

YouTube’s also looking to simplify CTV media buying, by providing more ways to purchase CTV inventory.

“To help CTV buyers deliver more coordinated ad campaigns, YouTube ads can now be purchased within Display & Video 360’s insertion order dedicated to connected TV ad buying. This simplified workflow features parameters designed specifically for CTV campaigns to help minimize technical blockers that typically limit reach on CTV devices. Because it puts YouTube side-by-side with other top CTV inventory, it also makes it easier to optimize for common goals or control ad frequency across your entire CTV media mix.

That could make it easier to incorporate YouTube CTV inventory into your broader media mix, which is more aimed at larger-scale advertisers, but could also provide optimization opportunities for smaller brands too.

And again, with CTV viewing on the rise, it’s worth exploring your opportunities in this respect, and considering how TV-aligned messaging could help to improve your reach and resonance.

Indeed, according to eMarketer, CTV consumption is projected to steadily increase over the coming years.

Traditional TV is losing its appeal, as consumers get more accustomed to watching whatever they want, when they want it, while the shift to short-form video has also exacerbated the trend towards more compact video content, even on your home TV set.

And as younger generations get more accustomed to these new consumption trends, you can expect this to become a more embedded activity, which is why CTV trends should definitely be on your radar for media placement.

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Audience guarantees are now available for Programmatic Guaranteed ads running with publishers on Google Ad Manager in the US, with more regions coming soon.

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