(Yicai Global) Jan. 20 -- A third-party testing institution has been suspended after its staffer lied about the results of nucleic acid tests in a North China hotspot, claiming all had come back negative.
The Covid-19 pandemic has recently staged a resurgence in Hebei province, which surrounds Beijing.
Longyao county under the jurisdiction of Xingtai, which is 400 kilometers from the Chinese capital, carried out second-round nucleic acid tests of all its residents from Jan. 12 to 13. The staffer surnamed Zhai, who worked at Jinan Huaxi Medical Testing, the firm conducting the screening, claimed all results were negative before the company actually proofed the samples it had collected. One later came back positive.
Zhai, whose motive is unknown, is now in criminal detention and charged with endangering public security while the case is under investigation.
“The third-party testing institution’s lying about the results of nucleic acid tests caused the prevention and control of the Covid-19 pandemic to become passive and also influenced local agencies’ decision making,” said the head of the county health bureau.
Longyao started third-round tests of its residents yesterday. Public medical organizations will now take this over and announce the results, per the report, which cited the Xintai city government.
Jinan Huaxi Medical Testing is an affiliate of Shandong Nucleus Gene Technology, a wholly-owned unit of Shenzhen Nucleus Gene Technology. Huaxi added the nucleic acid testing for Covid-19 and its related IgG as well as IgM antibodies in February and June last year, respectively. It has a daily capacity of 8,000 samples. It had taken samples of 423,492 residents as of Jan. 16.
Editor: Ben Armour, Xiao Yi