A health worker checks the temperature of residents as they line up to be tested for the COVID-19 coronavirus in Qingdao, in China’s eastern Shandong province on Monday. STR/AFP via Getty Images
The Chinese city of Qingdao is testing all nine million of its residents after 12 new coronavirus cases were detected.
Officials noted six symptomatic and six asymptomatic cases and traced them to a hospital that tends to treat foreign patients, the state-backed Global Times newspaper reported.
Life in China, where the virus was first detected, is mostly back to normal, but authorities move quickly and test widely when new cases are found.
China also tested the entire city of Wuhan, home to 11 million people, in May, when it was afraid the virus could spike there again.
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China is testing an entire city of nine million people for the coronavirus after it discovered 12 cases connected to a hospital.
The city of Qingdao found six new COVID-19 cases and another six asymptomatic cases on Sunday, and connected them to the local Qingdao Chest Hospital, China’s state-backed Global Times newspaper reported.
Officials there are aiming to test the whole city in five days. The hospital is where COVID-19 patients from overseas are treated, according to the Global Times.
Pictures show people lining up in their communities to get the free tests.
Qingdao residents wait to be tested for COVID-19 on Monday. STR/AFP via Getty Images
The Global Times reported that some testing points are open from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m.
The BBC reported that around 114,860 people had been tested as of Monday, according to Qingdao’s Municipal Health Commission.
Reuters reported that the Qingdao Chest Hospital and the buildings where infected patients live have been locked down to stop the virus spreading.
China was the first country to report coronavirus cases, with the first major outbreak in Wuhan. But the country has now largely recovered, with life almost back to normal.
Its strategy has involved tracking down contacts of those who test positive, and telling them to isolate. Mask-wearing and social distancing are also common.
A health worker takes a swab from a resident to be tested for the COVID-19 coronavirus in Qingdao on Monday. STR/AFP via Getty Images
Qingdao is not the first example of a city-sized response to relatively few cases of COVID-19. Officials tested the city of Wuhan, which has 11 million people, in May, after a handful of cases were discovered.
China’s confirmed COVID-19 death toll now stands at 4,739, while the US, the world’s worst-hit country, has seen more than 214,000 deaths.
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