Many Beijing residents to be tested for COVID during lockdown concern

Beijing will mass test most of its 21,000,000 residents, officials announced Monday. This was in response to a new COVID-19 epidemic that sparked food stockpiling by residents concerned about a Shanghai-style lockdown.

Many Beijing residents to be tested for COVID during lockdown concern

China's capital started mass testing residents in one of 16 districts, where the majority of new cases were found. Individual residential buildings were also locked down and a section of the city was placed under lockdown. Health officials announced late in the day that testing would be extended Tuesday to all but five districts.

Although only 70 cases were reported since Friday's outbreak, authorities in China have taken strict measures to stop the spread of the virus.

Many residents worked from their homes and stocked up on food to avoid being locked down in an indoor environment. This has been the case in many cities including Shanghai, the financial center. As the omicron variant spreads, the lockdowns were initiated in the cities of Anyang and Dandong in central China.

Shanghai, which was kept down for more then two weeks, has reported more than 19,000 new cases and 51 deaths during the last 24-hour period. This brings its declared death toll from this ongoing outbreak to 138.

Beijingers snapped up noodles, rice, and other food items in long lines at supermarkets. Store workers also quickly restocked empty shelves. According to state media, supplies were still plentiful despite the surge in buying.

The shoppers seemed concerned, but not panicked. One woman carrying two bags of vegetables and eggs, as well as frozen dumplings, stated that she was purchasing a little more than usual. A man stated that he wasn't concerned, but was being cautious because he has a 2-year old daughter.

Beijing health officials announced that 29 additional cases were identified between 4 p.m. Monday and Friday, bringing the total to 70 since Friday.

Mass testing was ordered by the city in Chaoyang, where 46 cases were found. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, the city will test Chaoyang's 3.5 million residents as well as those who work in the area.

In Chaoyang, testing sites were set up in the morning and at night at residences and offices in the area. Workers and residents gathered at temporary outdoor stations to have their throats swabbed by a worker wearing full protective gear. It is completely free.

Gao Haiyang said, "I think Beijing should not be trouble," as he waited to take a COVID-19 exam. Based on previous responses from my community, I believe supply can be assured if there is an emergency. We also learned lessons from other cities. "I believe we can make great preparations."

Shanghai is under tight lockdown, which has forced residents to come together to order food through group buying. The port of Shanghai has been impacted by goods backlogs, which have affected supplies and factory production, and put a halt to economic growth.

Beijing ordered residents to be locked down in an area of approximately 2 by 3 km (1 by 2 mi) and told them to work remotely from home while they remained in their homes. Although it wasn't total lockdown, cinemas and other entertainment venues were closed.

Other areas were also closed by the city, including five residential complexes, and others that were taken down on Sunday.


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