Left Menu
Development News Edition

Portuguese resort to test all residents ahead of summer season

Reuters | Lisbon | Updated: 22-05-2020 16:58 IST | Created: 22-05-2020 16:20 IST
Portuguese resort to test all residents ahead of summer season
Representative Image Image Credit: Flickr

A popular beach town near Lisbon plans to be the first in Portugal to test all of its 200,000 residents for coronavirus antibodies to try and help them enjoy as normal a summer season as possible despite the crisis.

Born and bred in Cascais, loved for its beaches and golf courses, 57-year-old Marina Lima was one of the first to enter the tiny testing room when the initiative began on Thursday. Results take 24 hours, and Lima hoped hers may clear her for spending more time with family, including a two-month-old grandson. "Having that information is very good," she said.

The municipality of Cascais hopes to conduct 5,000 tests per week in a deal with pharmaceutical firm Roche. Each test costs five euros ($5.45) and is paid for by the municipality and several patrons, said Cascais' deputy mayor Miguel Pinto Luz. "These kinds of initiatives also increase people's confidence, which is needed now we are trying to restart the economy," said Pinto Luz before himself being tested.

Mass antibody testing is being considered by many countries to speed the reopening of economies. Portugal, which so far has nearly 30,000 cases and 1,277 deaths, is slowly easing restrictions from a mid-March lockdown.

Although the tests show who has been infected by COVID-19, it is not yet clear whether the presence of antibodies confers permanent immunity. Retiree Jose Ferreira, 79, will book an appointment to do his free test but has doubts.

"Experts say the test itself can give us an idea but not exactly whether we are immune or not," the 79-year-old said as he walked by one of Cascais' beaches. "I hope it goes well, for the benefit of all."

To coax people back outside safely, Cascais has come up with initiatives including a carefully-controlled food fair, free buses, vending machines for masks, and geometrical figures on the grass to help sunbathers and picnickers keep apart. "We miss being outside," said 33-year-old Gabriela Ferreira at a park. "Here we feel safe and can still have fun."

($1 = 0.9179 euros)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

COVID-19 seems cooking biggest ever global scam

The increasing number of corruption cases on COVID-19 funds from throughout the world and involvement of high profile persons indicate that the countries cant ignore corruption in their pandemic response programs. This has generated the nee...

Health Management Information Systems lack holistic, integrated, and pandemic resilient character

Being a part of the United Nations system, the World Health Organization WHO deserves its share of rebuke for its alleged failure issue COVID-19 health emergency alerts on appropriate time. However, the pandemic has also exposed loopholes i...

Pride in the time of coronavirus: a welcome move online?

This year is different in many ways not least as celebrations are also taking place against the dramatic backdrop of a global health crisis and a resurgence in grassroots activism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. ...

COVID-19: Weighing up the benefits and limitations of edtech platforms

Edtech companies shouldnt focus on merely pushing contents, but to provide an interactive, effective teaching and learning environment. ...

Videos

Latest News

Forest fire spreads in Turkey's Gallipoli peninsula

Hundreds of firefighters were working to extinguish a forest fire in northwest Turkeys Gallipoli peninsula on Monday, state-owned Anadolu news agency said, adding maritime traffic in the Canakkale straits was suspended due to the blaze. The...

Prayers mark Dalai Lama's 85th birthday

The Dalai Lama on Monday turned 85, his birthday celebrated through prayers here at the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile which also condoled the deaths of Indian soldiers in the recent clash with Chinese troops. In his message to the...

World's longest-surviving conjoined twin brothers die at 68

The worlds longest-surviving conjoined twins died on July 4 at the age of 68. Ronnie and Donnie Galyon, of Beavercreek, Ohio, were born joined at the abdomen on October 28, 1951. In 2014, the brothers earned the distinction of being the wor...

Not practical to plant 26 crore saplings in a day, UP govt lying: Akhilesh Yadav

Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav on Monday refuted the Uttar Pradesh governments claim of planting 26 crore saplings across the state in a single day and accused it of making false claims and misleading the people. The saplings were...

Give Feedback