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Global Times

Shanghai adds one more medium-risk area for COVID-19, no district-wide testing planned: local authorities

Global Times

By Global Times Published: Jan 23, 2021 04:43 PM

Shanghai reported three new local COVID-19 cases on Friday, bringing the total to nine in the latest round of the epidemic flare-up in the city. Local health authorities said on Saturday that of the nine cases, five were found in close contacts and one from relevant personnel screening.

As the city steps up epidemic prevention and control measures, a community in suburban Baoshan district where the infected people live has been identified as a medium-risk area for contracting the virus, making the city have three medium-risk areas in total. But no district-wide coronavirus testing is planned, said officials at a press briefing in Shanghai on Saturday.

In a batch of tests conducted on 160 close contacts of the patients, five have been confirmed after testing positive for coronavirus, while two remain unverified, Wu Jinglei, head of the Shanghai Health Commission said at the press briefing. Another batch of tests on 299 secondary contacts has all produced negative results.

Some 28,332 personnel have been screened during the latest outbreak in the city, and one of the samples tested positive for coronavirus.

A total of 1,939 samples taken from the environment and objects related to the confirmed cases were also tested, 30 of which returned positive results.

Currently, both city-level and district-level centers for disease control are working on the survey of the epidemiological report for further clues of the chain of transmission.

In response to the escalating tensions brought by the surging cases, Shanghai has decided to identify the community in Baoshan district, where two of the infected people live, as a medium-risk area for contracting the virus.

However, local officials stated that Shanghai isn't planning to conduct district-wide coronavirus testing of all residents.

During the press briefing, Wu refuted a rumor circulating on the internet about a piano teacher who taught over 100 students before being confirmed as a COVID-19 patient. "According to epidemiological research, one of the confirmed patients is a professional piano performer who spent most of his time in the studio. Some 82 close contacts and 434 related personnel of the case have been traced, which all tested negative for coronavirus in initial testing, a second test is to be conducted within 24 hours."

Employees working in cold-chain industry or other high-risk fields will receive nucleic acid testing and receive vaccination, Liu Min, deputy head of the Shanghai bureau of commerce noted.

Cold-chain products without testing or disinfection certification will be strictly banned from the market, she added.

For public transport services, local authorities suggested passengers to scan health codes to register their movements, and must wear protective masks when taking taxis. Drivers could deny picking up passengers if they refuse to wear a mask.

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