Addressing yesterday evening’s press conference about Macao’s novel coronavirus situation, Tai Wa Hou, a clinical director of the Conde de São Januário Hospital Centre, revealed that an expert team organised by the National Health Commission (NHC) has concluded a four-day inspection visit in Macao assessing the city’s Covid-19 prevention work.
Tai said the team acknowledged Macao’s achievements in its Covid-19 prevention and control work, however it had urged the local government to carry out more “proactive” measures to boost Covid-19 vaccinations considering the “large” difference in inoculation rates between Macao and the mainland.
Tai said that the NHC experts gave local health officials various suggestions on improving the city’s novel coronavirus prevention and control measures, in addition to acknowledging the city’s achievements.
Tai said that the government had not invited the media to cover the visit as it merely involved “internal” exchanges on technical matters among health officials from both sides. Tai pledged that the government will announce details about the visit in due course.
“Experts from the NHC have also visited various regions in the mainland to assess their respective Covid-19 prevention work, which have always been carried out as “internal” exchanges. We did not invite the media to cover the team’s visit to Macao, so as to respect their usual practice,” Tai said.
The NHC team consisted of eight experts from various fields such as prevention and control of infectious diseases, clinical treatment and laboratory testing. They carried out on-site inspections of Macao’s Covid-19 prevention and control work from different angles.
Tai said the NHC experts came up with various suggestions on improving Macao’s Covid-19 work, such as strengthening its monitoring and management of certain groups of people who are potentially subject to a higher Covid-19 risk, and improving its awareness campaigns on Covid-19 vaccinations.
Tai added that the NHC experts visited various places related to Covid-19 work, such as the Macao checkpoint of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB), the command centre of the Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre, a number of “quarantine hotels” and the Conde de São Januário Hospital Centre, as well as a number of health centres, NAT stations, and Covid-19 vaccination facilities.
According to Tai, the NHC experts pointed out that inoculating against the novel coronavirus is one of the most important measures on Covid-19 prevention and control. The experts also noted the “large” gap in Covid-19 vaccination rates between Macao and the mainland. This, according to Tai, is “adversely affecting” Macao’s Covid-19 prevention and control work.
Tai also noted that the NHC experts suggested that the Macao government should roll out more “proactive” measures to boost the Covid-19 vaccination rate.
In particular, Tai quoted the NHC experts as saying that Macao should launch measures to raise the Covid-19 vaccination rate among certain groups of people who are subject to a higher Covid-19 risk, in line with “the principle of inoculating as many people as possible”.
In addition, Tai said that the NHC experts also urged the Macao government to study the reasons why certain residents have chosen not to get vaccinated against Covid-19 so that it can come up with accurate measures to render its vaccination campaigns more effective.
The experts also suggested that Macao should boost Covid-19 vaccinations through “community mobilisation”, urging local enterprises to assume their “social responsibility” by pushing their employees to be inoculated.
Tai noted that over two billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in mainland China, adding that Macao can learn from the mainland’s experience in achieving a higher vaccination rate.
As its next step, Tai said, the Macao government will roll out measures to boost Covid-19 vaccinations among certain groups of people in line with “the principle of vaccinating as many people as possible”, such as medical workers, those working on the frontline at the city’s border checkpoints, civil servants and teachers.
Tai underlined that all residents have the responsibility and obligation to be inoculated against Covid-19 to protect themselves from the novel coronavirus, and more importantly, to protect seniors and children living with them.
“Everybody knows that for the time being those aged below 12 are unable to be inoculated, because of which the protection for children relies on vaccinations among adults and teachers, and that’s why they have this responsibility and obligation,” Tai said.
As of 4 pm yesterday, 603,152 doses of Covid-19 vaccine had been administered to 327,783 people in Macao, comprising 50,470 who had received their first jab and 277,313 who had received their second jab, reported The Macau Post Daily.
Macao’s Covid-19 vaccination rate stood at 48 per cent as of 4 pm yesterday.
A total of 11 adverse events were reported in the past 24 hours (until 4 pm yesterday). The total number of adverse events since the start of the vaccination drive stood at 2,557, or 0.42 per cent of the total number of jabs, including eight serious cases.