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Tuesday, Sep 29, 2020

Wuhan plans a massive test covering 11 million residents

Wuhan plans a massive test covering 11 million residents

The entire population of Wuhan will be tested for coronavirus after new cases were confirmed in the Chinese city despite a strict lockdown.
According to Global Times sources at the Wuhan Health Authority, the city is preparing to start a test campaign that would last about ten days.

The city would respond with these massive tests to the fears of the population after six new cases were detected in a residential complex.

Hubei Province have been with zero cases since last April 4, which led to lowering the quarantine measures earlier this month. 80% of China's COVID-19 cases and 97% of deaths have been in Hubei.

The tests will focus especially on the communities with the highest population density.

Yang Zhanqiu deputy director of the pathogen biology department at Wuhan University said that 3-5 million Wuhan residents have been tested so far: "Wuhan is capable of testing another 6-8 million in ten days".

Wuhan has tested teachers, medical workers, public transport workers, public service workers in shopping malls and other public places, along with supervisors and people at nursing homes. Teachers and medical workers have had serum antibodies tests, chinanews.cn reported in late April.

Yang believes the city-wide test may be unnecessary as "you'll never know if people were infected after testing negative." So "It's essentially an epidemiological investigation to determine the current situation."

Wu Zunyou, an epidemiologist from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said Monday on CCTV that large-scale screening and testing is unnecessary. Wu believes the main battlefields are in key communities and certain groups of people.

According to Yang, city-wide testing would allow residents of the hard-hit city feel more at ease, and speed up the process of returning to work and school.

Wang Zhonglin, the Party chief of Wuhan, stressed on Monday at a conference that learning from recent new cases will prevent a rebound and is the best way to ensure people's health and safety.

Along with strengthening prevention at the community level and the symptom reporting system, Wang said Wuhan will further expand the scale of testing, and the detailed epidemic prevention and control measures will be "normalized."
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