Certain occupational and racial groups of individuals – identified as key groups by the Health Bureau (SSM) – have been ordered to take four nucleic acid tests (NAT) in eight days.
The new series of tests concerns workers in construction, laundry and security trades, as well as non-resident workers from Nepal and Vietnam. They are required by the SSM to take a test every two days for eight consecutive days as soon as possible.
Neurosurgeon Tai Wa Hou, medical director of the public Conde de São Januário Hospital, defended the scheme, saying that these groups of individuals were picked because they have higher risk of infection. The aim is to detect any infection as early as possible.
“These individuals are only identified as key screening targets,” Tai stressed. “They are neither suspicious cases nor diagnosed. They don’t even hold a yellow health code.”
Regarding the parameters defining these groups, Tai said that those who have conducted “long-hour interior construction works after September 24” are included. In the security trade, only security guards are included.
Moreover, all individuals who work in a laundry plant, regardless of their specialization or position, are included.
When questioned whether there is a deadline for the high-frequency NAT scheme, Tai said that the authorities hope that these individuals can conclude the test series as soon as possible.
He added that they did not have to commence their own test series yesterday or the day before, although he added that they should start today at the very latest. The key is that they conclude four tests within eight days, with a test every two days.
“We hope these groups of individuals can finish the test series on October 17 at the latest,” Tai eventually specified.
Tai hinted that the SSM has no means of pinpointing construction workers who fit the definition for this test series. He added that the test series is advantageous for these individuals. “Early detection results in early treatment,” Tai said.
“If they fail to get tested two times consecutively, they will get yellow health codes,” Tai warned.
Tai did not confirm whether the SSM is preparing for the fourth round citywide NAT test, although the authorities are always making evaluations.
Quarantine measures upon arrival
With effect from October 7, prior to boarding a non-stop flight or the first flight of an interline itinerary for Macau from overseas places:
Individuals travelling from extremely high-risk countries (Bangladesh, Brazil, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Turkey) must present a proof of three negative COVID-19 nucleic acid tests within seven days (each at least 24 hours apart, with the last test performed no earlier than 48 hours before boarding).
Individuals travelling from other countries must present a proof of negative COVID-19 nucleic acid test taken within 48 hours.
Individuals aged 12 or above must also present a certificate certifying that they have completed the whole course of COVID-19 vaccination for 14 days, or that they are unfit for COVID-19 vaccination.
Relevant certificates must be issued for the purpose of international travel or recognized by the Chinese Embassies/Consulates.