Friday 10/23/20
CORONAVIRUS

Chinese city tests 10 million people for coronavirus in 4 days

Authorities used "sample pooling," meaning they collected residents' individual samples, and then processed 10 of them at once in a single nucleic acid test.  
14 October 2020, China, Qingdao: A man walks in the Huo Yan laboratory after it comes into service as nine people were found infected with coronavirus (COVID-19). Photo: TPG/dpa.
A man walks in the Huo Yan laboratory after it comes into service. Photo: TPG/dpa.

A Chinese city, Qingdao, tested almost 10 million people for coronavirus within four days following the appearance of a cluster of cases, local authorities said Thursday.

A total of 13 infections have been discovered since the weekend. Altogether, 9.94 million samples were collected, of which 7.6 million had been processed by early Thursday.

The cases were all related to a local hospital.

Authorities used "sample pooling," meaning they collected residents' individual samples, and then processed 10 of them at once in a single nucleic acid test.  

If the result in a pool turned out positive, all 10 residents would be notified and required to take individual nucleic acid tests, according to Qingdao's municipal health commission.

People from other cities who had travelled recently to Qingdao were also required by employers or local party committees to take nucleic acid tests.

Director suspended

The director of the Qingdao municipal health commission, Sui Zhenhua, was suspended because of the virus' resurgence, Xinhua news agency reported.

Apart from the Qingdao cluster, China has only recorded coronavirus infections imported from abroad in recent weeks.

The country brought the virus' spread under control with measures such as movement tracking, locking down cities, and entry bans.

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