Skip to content
Menu

Elderly and disabled excused from future mass-testings

Macao braces for 11th round of mass-testing; health chief aiming for zero cases; online video of unmasked smoking cops provokes sharp criticism.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

Macao braces for 11th round of mass-testing; health chief aiming for zero cases; online video of unmasked smoking cops provokes sharp criticism.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 4:41 am

After 10 rounds of citywide testing, residents and non-residents born on or before 31 December 1942, persons with disabilities holding a valid Disability Assessment Registration Card from the Social Welfare Bureau and those who rely on others to assist them in their daily lives will be exempted from citywide testing. 

Starting today – the city’s 11th round of mass-testing – these groups will no longer be required to join the mandatory NATs so long as they meet the necessary requirements and apply for exemptions, said Leong Iek Hou, Head of the Health Bureau’s Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Division. 

Caretakers or families must apply for these exemptions online on this link. Masks and rapid antigen tests distributed at mass NATs can be collected by applicants on behalf of these individuals so long as they have a screenshot of the exemption receipt and the individual’s health code. 

Leong added: “We hope to get zero cases this week so we can enter the period of consolidation.” She also suggested that the present 10+7 quarantine period for Macao arrivals could soon be adjusted. 

Meanwhile, another topic that dominated yesterday’s daily Covid-19 briefing was a video circulating yesterday showing eight unmasked police officers smoking in close proximity to each other within police quarters, which provoked substantial online criticism. 

Lei Tak Fai, Head of the Public Security Police Force’s Public Relations, asked for the population’s understanding and for reasonable attitudes towards this incident. He also said that this cannot be compared to the [27 cases] that have been prosecuted so far as this incident happened within a private facility and not in a public space. 

He added: “The content specified in the Chief Executive’s Order 115/2022 refers to the crowd control and epidemic prevention requirements in public places. We [the police] have always only carried out epidemic prevention and law enforcement in public places. For areas within private buildings, we only call on relevant property management agencies to control the flow of people and take epidemic prevention measures. For places in private residences, the police have no right to enforce the law.”

Unitary Police Services public relations officer Cheong Kin Iam said 567 people had been warned for various transgressions between 11 July and 3 pm yesterday and 27 people have been prosecuted for not abiding by the government’s strict anti-Covid-19 measures. 

The latest Covid-19 numbers show only 27 new Covid-19 cases recorded on16 July, bringing the city’s tally to 1,733 cases as of midnight Saturday night. Of these, 656 were symptomatic and 1,077 were asymptomatic.

Among the new cases, 23 were found under management and control in Red Code Zones and medical observation hotels while only four were detected in the community: two cases of close contacts, two cases in the Citywide NAT and Key Groups NAT, and zero cases among other population groups. 

As of 3 pm yesterday, more than 21,000 people were under follow-up while 65 patients were discharged, making a total of 384 patients released since 18 June.

Starting today, Macao enters its second phase of a partial-lockdown where all non-essential services remain closed until 00:00 on 23 July. All branches of the city’s 31 banks and 12 insurance institutions are also to suspend services to the public until Friday, the Monetary Authority of Macao has announced. Online banking and ATM services will continue to function normally.

 

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 4:41 am

Send this to a friend