China to test entire city for coronavirus in 5 days
Published: 12:10 PM, 12 October 2020
Following a minor outbreak of the coronavirus, China aims to test more than nine million residents of the port city of Qingdao within five days.
Earlier in May, the country, where the virus first emerged, tested the entire city of Wuhan - home to 11 million people and the epicentre of the global pandemic.
China has largely controlled the pandemic, cutting a stark contrast to many parts of the world still afflicted by rolling lockdowns and high case numbers.
Six new cases and six asymptomatic cases of Covid-19 were confirmed on Sunday in Qingdao - a northeastern city of 9.4 million - originating in a hospital. All the cases were linked to the same hospital treating coronavirus patients arriving from overseas.
Following this, five districts will be tested “within three days” and the whole city “within five days”, Qingdao municipal health commission said in a statement on Monday.
China has extensive, quick test capabilities and the health commission said over 140,000 employees of “medical institutions, newly admitted patients and personnel” have already been tested in Qingdao since the cases were confirmed.
In June large areas of Beijing were subject to mass tests after the city of more than 20 million detected virus cases linked to a food market.
China has bounced back since the virus emerged late last year, closing the country down and hammering the world’s second-largest economy.
Hundreds of millions travelled across the country for the ‘Golden Week’ holiday last week as the country edges back to growth, while rapid tests and swift lockdowns have tamped down secondary waves of the virus.