Macau starts third round of COVID-19 mass testing today

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ccording to an announcement from the Macao SAR Government, the third round of mass testing will be conducted for all the people in Macau, which will be done for 48 hours starting Monday 9 pm. The mass testing is due to the SAR having confirmed its 72nd case of Covid-19 on Monday.

The recently discovered case is a 46-year-old man who lives in Zhuhai, China, and works in Macau. He arrived in Macau on September 26 and has remained in the SAR since, staying in three separate hotels, Sands Macao (26 and 27 September), Grand Emperor (28 and 29 September and from 1 October), and Victoria Hotel Macau (30 September). He received virus tests on 28 and 30 September and returned negative results. During his most recent stint in Macau, he had also visited the Oceanus casino.

However, the government announced that a pooled test of samples from 10 people had returned a positive result for COVID-19 who were each rushed to hospital and tested individually, with the man returning a positive result and being announced as Macau’s 72nd case.

The government revealed during a 75-minute press conference on Monday afternoon that the latest case had also visited Oceanus during his stay, although both Oceanus and Sands Macao have been allowed to remain open for now pending further contact tracing. Grand Emperor and Victoria Hotel are currently closed due to being located in “red zones”.

This is the third round of mass testing since the start of August, and the second time in nine days. The Macau government seems determined to adopt the same strategy as China’s, having a zero-Covid strategy.

Macau’s border with Zhuhai was effectively closed on Sunday 26 September after two security guards working at a designated quarantine hotel tested positive. The border was originally scheduled to reopen three days later on 29 September but the opening was postponed until 1 October, then until midday today before being canceled again at the last minute.

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