Macao wraps up a three-day COVID-19 testing drive with all 614,000 tested negative

Macao wrapped up a three-day COVID-19 testing drive, with an estimated 614,000 people being tested. So far, no one has tested positive.

An expert in Hong Kong, Leung Chi-Chiu, say the enclave should be closely monitored for at least two more weeks to ensure there’s no widespread outbreak of the virus.

Outside the Macao Polytechnic Institute this morning, few people were lined up for testing.

A traveler from the mainland said he’s getting impatient. He said he had the test on Thursday, but the results were still not ready, meaning his visa and his departure from the territory could be affected.

Another man, meanwhile, wanted to do a second test, but he was turned down.

Health authorities in Macao are allowing those who cannot meet the testing deadline to get tested at the regular nucleic testing booths, or at the Macao Forum. It’s also not ruling out a second round of mass testing, depending on circumstances.

All travelers to Macao must hold proof of a negative test upon entry. Many shops at the iconic tourist hot spot Ruins of St.Paul’s were closed following the measures.

So far, Macao has not identified new infections. But Leung cautions that does not mean the situation is under control, adding Hong Kong cannot do mass testing like Macao. “For Hong Kong, our main defense line is our border control. We do not have the testing capacity to finish population testing within two to three days, either at the sampling or the lab turnover, saidLeung.

He added that even if we can do the population testing repeatedly unless we can immobilize the population movement to what is necessary to sustain all the essential activities, otherwise the virus still has a chance to spread within the population.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)