Enlarge /. On May 15, 2020, medical workers take swab samples from residents (L) on a street in Wuhan in the Chinese province of Hubei to be tested for the COVID-19 coronavirus. 19 tests for every 11 million residents after a new group of cases occurred over the weekend.
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Chinese officials have started an unprecedented attempt to test 11 million people for COVID-19 in just 10 days.
Plans for the gigantic feat were implemented earlier this week after officials in Wuhan, the capital of central China's Hubei province, where the pandemic started in January, identified a group of six new cases last weekend. The cluster included an 89-year-old symptomatic man and five asymptomatic cases, all living in the same flat share.
The six cases were the first new infection to be discovered in over a month in the severely affected city – and government officials are taking no chances of thwarting a dreaded second wave of infections. They quickly announced a plan to test all of the city's residents, who number approximately 11 million.
It is unclear whether the government can collect enough test kits and organize the logistics of the test sites during this period. Even if they excluded people who had recently been tested, the city would still have to test at least 730,000 people a day, state media reported. According to the media, the current test capacity in the city is a maximum of 100,000 tests per day.
According to reports from the New York Times, the city plans to conduct tests on a staggered, neighborhood basis. Government announcements about website testing came through social media, paper planes, and announcements on speakers.
A contribution on social media read: “A nucleic acid test is your responsibility towards yourself, your family and society. Please support and cooperate. ”Another note asked the residents not to“ leave anyone behind ”to test them all.
The Times reports that the city has set up rows of tents in the first parts of the city and social media posts show pictures of dozens of residents standing at safe intervals to be wiped off by medical professionals wearing full protective gear.
In the first wave, the government is reported to target older communities, densely populated neighborhoods, and neighborhoods with rural migrants.
However, the Times noted that there were reports of confusion in some districts about how residents should be tested. And it's unclear whether medical companies can keep up with the demand for test kits during the 10-day campaign. Some residents were also concerned or upset that they had to go to test centers to potentially expose themselves to exposure. Although the blockade was lifted weeks ago, some residents remain largely in. And as the theoretical performance advances, at least one infectious disease expert is skeptical that it is necessary, and says in a television interview that the city is instead focusing on "keys" should focus on areas and key groups. "