Macau Launches More COVID Testing as Infections Soar

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Macau kicked off a brand new spherical of city-wide COVID-19 testing on Monday for its greater than 600,000 residents, as officers raced to include a spiralling variety of instances within the worst outbreak to hit the world’s greatest playing hub for the reason that pandemic started.

Coronavirus testing for all residents will happen thrice this week throughout the town, with individuals additionally required to take fast antigen checks in-between.

The transfer comes as the previous Portuguese colony reported 90 new instances on Sunday, taking the entire variety of infections to 784 for the reason that center of June. More than 11,000 individuals are in quarantine.

Whereas Macau, a Chinese language particular administrative area, has not launched a full scale lockdown seen in mainland Chinese language cities like Shanghai, the town is already largely closed.

All non-essential authorities providers are shut, colleges, parks, sports activities and leisure services are closed and eating places can solely present takeaway.

Casinos are allowed to stay open however most workers have been requested to remain dwelling, in step with directions to the town’s residents. The federal government mentioned it could not shut casinos to guard jobs.

The stringent measures come after Macau has been largely COVID-free since an outbreak in October 2021.

Macau adheres to China’s “zero-COVID” coverage which goals to eradicate all outbreaks, at nearly any price, operating counter to a world development of making an attempt to co-exist with the virus.

Macau’s instances are nonetheless far under each day infections somewhere else, together with neighbouring Hong Kong the place instances have jumped to greater than 2,000 a day this month.

Nevertheless, it solely has one public hospital, whose providers are already stretched each day. The territory has an open border with mainland China, with many residents dwelling and dealing within the adjoining metropolis of Zhuhai.

(Reporting by Farah Grasp; Modifying by Muralikumar Anantharaman)

Copyright 2022 Thomson Reuters.

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