Government plans carefully chartered flight arrangements to bring Macao residents home from Hubei

The Government is confident that is capable of managing any risk that might be associated with the chartered flight it has arranged for tomorrow (Saturday) to bring home 59 Macao residents that wish to leave Hubei Province.

Only Macao residents will be permitted to board tomorrow’s chartered flight. They are required to make a personal declaration regarding the condition of their health, and will be subject to medical checks. They should neither have history of close contact with anyone known to have contracted novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the 14 days prior to the flight, nor should they have been to any hospitals in the previous 14 days.

The list of returnees encompasses 59 people drawn from an aggregate of 32 families. Those due to travel include 19 minors and two elderly people. Those intending to take the chartered flight are responsible for arranging transport from their respective location in Hubei Province to the Wuhan Tianhe International Airport. Those due to travel have been staying in several cities across Hubei, including Wuhan, Xiaogan, Xiaocheng, Huanggang, Xianning, Suizhou, Xiangyang, Enshi, Yichang, Huangshi, Shiyan and Jingzhou.

If upon arrival in Macao, any of the returnees show COVID-19 -type symptoms, they will be taken via chartered transport from MacauInternational Airport directly to the Conde S. Januário Hospital for quarantine and checks. Returnees will otherwise be transported to the Public Health Clinical Centre in Coloane for a 14-day quarantine. During that period, they will be asked to take three tests for COVID-19 – the first scheduled for Sunday (8 March).

Personnel boarding the flight to Hubei in order to assist in bringing the Macao residents home are all volunteers. They include a Health Bureau team of six medical professionals and two staff members from the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO). The seven-member flight crew consists of staff from Air Macau.

The Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre has made a series of arrangements in order to minimise risk and to protect the safety of those assisting with the homecoming mission.

The returnees, Government personnel on board, and baggage handlers on the ground will each be supplied with a set of protective gear, including a face mask, a waterproof gown, a pair of gloves, and a diaper.

All those on board the chartered flight will be subject to medical checks. They have to put on protective clothing during their journey and have to observe special seating arrangements. After boarding, they are not allowed to take off their face mask, eat, drink, or use the on-board toilets.

Cabin crew will remain on board the aircraft after arriving Hubei. Likewise the pilot team and engineer team will not leave the cockpit. Upon arrival in Macao, the cabin attendants and the MGTO staff members will be transported to the Public Health Clinical Centre in Coloane for disinfection and then to Pousada Marina Infante hotel for a 14-day quarantine.

The medical professionals on board will be given seats in business class. They will be transported to the Public Health Clinical Centre in Coloane for disinfection upon arriving Macao, and must then have their health kept under surveillance for 14 days. If they wish, they can use during that time dormitory facilities arranged by the Health Bureau.

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