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Macau launches colour code to fight COVID-19

Macau’s Health Bureau (SSM) announced today the launch of a digital colour code to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

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Macau’s Health Bureau (SSM) announced today the launch of a digital colour code to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

The QR three-colour code system will start operating at 9 a.m. on Sunday when it will replace the bureau’s digital health declaration that is required at border checkpoints and for entering public administration premises, casinos and other venues.

The new system was announced by Leong Iek Hou from the bureau’s Disease Prevention and Control Centre at the daily press conference by the Novel Coronavirus Prevention and Coordination Centre about the highly infectious disease. Leong said the colour code would allow the bureau a “more complete monitoring” of the virus situation.

Currently, there are two different versions of the digital health declaration, one to enter public administration premises, casinos and other private buildings, the other to enter Macau. The health declaration asks the holder, “Do you have any discomfort or symptoms such as the following: fever, acute cough, [or] none of the symptoms.” The declaration also asks the holder whether he or she visited in the last 14 days Hubei province (including Wuhan), Hong Kong, Taiwan, or other mainland provinces or cities.

The new code, which requires its registrants to confirm whether they have been in COVID-19 quarantine at home or in a government-run facility, consists of three colours: red, yellow, green.

Red indicates a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case or a person who has been in a COVID-19 high-incidence area.

Non-residents whose colour code is red are denied entry into Macau, while residents will be immediately transferred to the public hospital for medical tests and possible hospitalisation. Red also means that the person is barred from entering public administration premises, casinos and other private premises such as banks.

Yellow merely requires the person to practise health self-management, such as checking one’s temperature at least twice a day and avoiding crowded places.

Green means that the person is not a formerly or currently confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case, is not a close former or current contact of an infected person, has not been in a COVID-19 high-incidence area nor has any symptoms.

The colour code is available in Macau’s two official languages, Chinese (in traditional and simplified characters) and Portuguese, as well as English, Macau’s lingua franca.

(The Macau Post Daily/Macau News)
PHOTO Beijing’s colour-coded QR system for coronavirus tracking | © South China Morning Post (SCMP)

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