CHINA Shanghai goes full throttle to stem COVID-19 resurgence


Shanghai goes full throttle to stem COVID-19 resurgence

11:01, March 31, 2022

Photo taken on March 30, 2022 shows the quarantine zone at the Shanghai New International Expo Center in east China's Shanghai. (Photo: Xinhua)

China's economic hub Shanghai is conducting a new round of screening using both nucleic acid and antigen testing to contain the latest resurgence in COVID-19 infections, a municipal health official told a press conference on Wednesday.

As of 10 a.m. Wednesday, around 9.1 million residents had undergone nucleic acid testing in many areas of the city including those on the east of the Huangpu River that are under temporary closed-off management, said Wu Qianyu, an official with the Shanghai Municipal Health Commission.

Around 17,000 testing personnel from Shanghai and the surrounding provinces of Jiangsu and Zhejiang had set up 6,300 test sites in these areas, Wu said.

Meanwhile, some 10.87 million residents had taken antigen testing to screen for COVID-19 infections by Wednesday morning.

The megacity with a population of over 24 million on Monday began enforcing temporary closed-off management in two phases to track possible infections and curb the spread of the virus.

Several isolation venues are under operation currently. The over 150,000-square-meter Shanghai World Expo Exhibition and Convention Center was converted into an isolation venue on Saturday, which can accommodate about 7,000 people. A gymnasium in Minhang District was also transformed into a quarantine venue in merely 72 hours, while medical teams have been sent to both sites.

Faced with an increasing number of infections, Shanghai is accelerating the transformation of more large venues into quarantine sites, said Wu.

"Although our city is going through a particularly severe test, I believe our concerted efforts will pull us through. The spirit of solidarity pulls us together and keeps us going," said a patient without giving her name at the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition and Convention Center.

Starting from Wednesday, Shanghai will carry out large-scale disinfection lasting one month in key places, such as office buildings, construction sites, transport vehicles, farmers markets and residential communities, according to the press conference.

Disinfecting public spaces is an important part of the city's epidemic prevention and control efforts, and it is also an effective measure to cut off the route of virus transmission, said Jin Chen, deputy director of Shanghai's housing and urban-rural development management committee.

Shanghai reported 326 confirmed locally transmitted COVID-19 cases and 5,656 asymptomatic carriers on Tuesday.

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