Macau’s health authorities said on Sunday that they would require all people wishing to enter the city’s casinos not only to have their body temperature measured and to display a health-declaration statement, but also to have a certificate of a “valid nucleic acid test” – issued within the previous 48 hours – proving they are free from Covid-19 infection. The new measure comes as Macau struggles to curb its most serious Covid-19 outbreak since the start of the pandemic in 2020.
The statement added that casino staff would also be required to produce a negative result for Covid-19 before each work shift, via a rapid antigen test.
The city’s health authorities further stated that whenever possible, casino staff should wear KN95 protective masks “or better” when in the presence of customers.
KN95 is the Chinese standard for a type of mask said to offer users higher protection against Covid-19 infection than normal surgical masks.
The announcement did not clarify if casino staff would be required to produce a Covid-19 test certificate starting already from Sunday (June 26).
Separately, Macao’s gaming regulator issued a press release urging the city’s casino operators strictly to comply with the anti-epidemic prevention guidelines issued by the local health authorities. This included “strengthening cleaning and disinfection work in casinos” and “reducing mobility and movement of personnel in casinos”.
The Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau stressed that individuals inside casinos should maintain sufficient space between themselves and others, and wear a protective face mask.
“Individuals entering casinos must cooperate with anti-epidemic prevention measures in order to reduce the risk of spread” of infection, the regulator said in its Sunday announcement. It added it would “continue to strengthen epidemic prevention inspections in casinos”.
Macau began on Monday a new round of mass testing of the population via nucleic acid tests – the third such exercise since June 20. The latest round started on 9am, and is due to be completed by 6pm on Tuesday (June 28). The local population has also been required since June 22 to undergo a number of rapid antigen tests, using kits provided by the local authorities.
(Updated 10.22am, June 27)
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