Covid-19 | 2,000 people registered to get inoculated on first day

A front-line healthcare worker receives a first dose of Covid-19 vaccine last week

Next Monday will be the commencement of the Covid-19 vaccination for the public and as of yesterday afternoon 2,200 people have booked to get their shots on the first day, Leong Iek Hou, coordinator at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention told yesterday’s weekly press conference.
The Health Bureau (SSM) will operate 12 vaccination venues across the city, namely government health centers and the government hospital. Leong disclosed that there is an even distribution of the 2,200 registrants so far.
An expected daily capacity of 5,000 vaccinations will be available across the city.
From February 8 to 20, priority groups of individuals are entitled to get the Covid-19 vaccination. Some 2,000 of them have already got the inoculation and another 2,300 are in the queue.
So far, more than 10,000 people have registered to take the jab.
For the time being, Leong disclosed, the health authority has not received any reports on side effects related to getting the jab.
Although the government has ordered three different types of the vaccines, only SinoPharm’s inactivated type has arrived so it is the only one available. The Chief Executive has said that the individuals taking the jab have the right to choose which type they will get, provided the type is available.
It has been said the Covid-19 jab requires regular re-vaccination to maintain validity. When questioned about that, Dr Alvis Lo from the government hospital said that more scientific data is needed to support that claim.
He further explained that both the virus and the vaccine are new, so it takes time to identify the active period of the vaccine. “Experientially, vaccine doesn’t normally last forever,” Lo said.
On the hopes of lifting the various measures as the vaccination rolls out, the doctor said that for the time being he does not see a strong support for that hope. He has previously said that getting vaccinated does not equate to full immunity.
When questioned about resumption of hurdle-free Macau-Hong Kong interactions, Lo admitted that Macau has been in negotiations with various places with regards to such resumption.
He said that SSM has not provided any information so far which can be released.
Two Covid-19 patients
negative for SARS-CoV-2
The remaining two cases of active Covid-19 infection in the city, both returnees from abroad, have recently tested negative for SARS-CoV-2.
“We will run another test for them in two days,” Lo added. “If they shall yield negative results, the patients may likely be relocated for recovery quarantine.”
In accordance with mainland China’s guidelines on determining Covid-19 recovery, which Macau follows, a patient must obtain two consecutive negative SARS-CoV-2 results with a 24 hours’ interval.
As a measure to monitor possible relapse, recovered Covid-19 patients in Macau will be put into recovery quarantine for 14 days at the Public Health Clinical Center in Coloane.
One of the two patients developed a mild fever in the early stages, but has not existed since February 10. The other patient has not developed any Covid-19-related symptoms.
The health authority also initially found IgM antibodies in another individual but the person tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 in nine separate viral tests. IgM antibodies for Covid-19 indicates first-responder type of protein.
“As of today, the individual has been quarantined for 28 days,” Lo said. “We tend to identify the person as a past infection and will allow self-health monitoring from [today].”
Lo added that a close contact related to this individual has also tested negative so far.
He also said that latest batch of returnees will conclude their quarantine period today and enter a week of self-health management. During the seven days, they will have their Macau Health Code in yellow, barring them from entering government offices, hotels and resorts.
The Macao Government Tourism Office announced yesterday that the Grand Coloane Resort will be converted to a self-selected quarantine hotel in response to the rising need for quarantine hotel rooms.
The Lisboeta Hotel and a part of the Sheraton Grand Macao Hotel has also been on the list of self-selected quarantine hotel.

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