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Macau confirms 3 COVID-19 cases in 2 days

2021-07-26 03:52     Comment:3

Macau has confirmed three COVID-19 cases in two days, two local residents returning from the Philippines on Saturday and a local man studying in Germany who returned to Macau also on Saturday, raising the city’s total number of novel coronavirus cases to 59.

The three latest COVID-19 cases have been classified as imported cases.

The two residents returning from the Philippines, the 57th and 58th cases, were confirmed on Saturday, while the man returning from Germany via France and Singapore, the latest and 59th case, was confirmed yesterday.

According to a statement by the Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre on Saturday, the two COVID-19 patients returning from the Philippines are a 28-year-old woman and her eight-year-old son.

According to Saturday’s statement, both tested negative for COVID-19 in nucleic acid tests (NATs) in the Philippines on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday last week. In addition, the son tested negative for IgM antibodies in a serology test there on Tuesday last week.

Upon arrival in Macau on Saturday on board Philippine Airlines flight PR8532, seat numbers 47A and 47C, the statement said, both underwent a nucleic acid test, which showed that both tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

According to the statement, both told the Health Bureau (SSM) that they had not been confirmed as COVID-19 patients before. However, the woman was vaccinated twice against COVID-19, on June 25 and Friday last week. The statement did not reveal the brand of vaccination.

2 diagnosed with COVID-19 in Philippines test positive again

Meanwhile, Saturday’s statement also announced that a 27-year-old female staff member of the Consulate-General of the Philippines in Macau and a one-year-old girl who is the daughter of another staff member of the consulate tested positive for COVID-19 in a nucleic acid test upon their arrival in Macau on Saturday.

According to the statement, both the woman and the baby tested negative for COVID-19 in nucleic acid tests in the Philippines on July 17, Sunday and Wednesday last week. In addition, the baby tested negative for IgM antibodies in a serology test there on Wednesday last week.

Both arrived in Macau on Saturday on board Philippine Airlines flight PR8532, seat numbers 45C and 44B.

According to the statement, the 27-year-old woman was vaccinated twice against the novel coronavirus, on June 14 and July 12.

The statement said that as both had been confirmed as COVID-19 patients in the Philippines in May, the Macau Health Bureau has classified their cases as ones in which “people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus again” in a nucleic acid test after having previously been infected with COVID-19 and recovered elsewhere.

Testing positive again vs relapse

The Health Bureau has previously pointed out that the fact that some COVID-19 patients discharged from hospital or asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus have later tested positive for the virus again in a nucleic acid test is “merely a phenomenon”, which means that they have not had a relapse, i.e. suffering COVID-19 symptoms again.

According to Saturday’s statement, the four have been transferred to the Health Bureau Public Health Clinical Centre in Coloane for follow-up diagnosis and treatment. The statement described their condition as “normal”.

59th case

According to a statement by the centre yesterday, the 31-year-old man tested negative for COVID-19 in a nucleic acid test (NAT) in Germany on Wednesday last week, before travelling by train to France on Friday last week where he caught Singapore Airlines flight SQ335 to Singapore, seat number 48A. On Saturday night he took transfer flight TR904 by Scoot to Macau, seat number 20A.

Upon arrival in Macau on Saturday night, he was immediately taken to the special emergency department of the public Conde de São Januário Hospital Centre because he was running a mild fever. His first nasopharyngeal swab was inconclusive, the statement said. A follow-up nucleic acid test yesterday confirmed his COVID-19 infection.

According to yesterday’s statement, the man told the Health Bureau that he had not been confirmed as a COVID-19 patient before and not been inoculated against the disease.

The statement described the man’s condition as “normal”, but he was still running a fever. He is undergoing follow-up diagnoses and treatments, the statement said.

Meanwhile, the centre announced in a follow-up statement last night that the 31-year-old man returning from Germany has been diagnosed with carrying the Delta variant – which was first detected in India.

Last night’s statement also announced that the two confirmed COVID-19 patients returning from the Philippines have been diagnosed with carrying the Alpha variant – which was first detected in the United Kingdom.

Macau confirmed its first COVID-19 case on January 22 last year. All of the cases have been classified as imported or “connected to imported cases”, and there has been no novel coronavirus fatality in Macau.

484,119 COVID-19 jabs

Meanwhile, the centre announced in another statement yesterday that as of 4 p.m. yesterday, 484,119 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered to 276,654 people in Macau, comprising 67,483 who had received their first jab and 209,171 who had received their second jab.

Macau’s COVID-19 vaccination rate stood at 40.5 percent as of 4 p.m. yesterday – i.e. about 40 percent of the population has received at least one jab.

A total of nine adverse events were reported in the past 24 hours (until 4 p.m. yesterday). The total number of adverse events since the start of the vaccination drive stood at 2,070, or 0.43 percent of the total number of jabs, including six serious cases.

The increase in Macau’s COVID-19 vaccination rate has recently slowed down. Speaking to reporters last week, Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture said that the number of people making an appointment per day to be inoculated against COVID-19 had decreased to only around 2,000 recently, as opposed to the peak around a few weeks ago when about 10,000 people on average made a COVID-19 vaccine appointment per day.

NAT cert for those who have visited Zhongshan valid for 48 hours only

Meanwhile, the centre announced in a statement on Friday that all Macau-Guangdong travellers who have visited Zhongshan since Monday last week must present a nucleic acid test (NAT) certificate confirming that they have tested negative for COVID-19 within the past 48 hours. The new measure took effect at 9 p.m. on Friday.

In general, the negative NAT result for those travelling between Macau and Guangdong is valid for seven days.


A doctor administers a dose of the BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at an inoculation centre in Leverkusen, Germany last month.  Photo: AFP

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