Jan 02, 2021 06:30 PM

Beijing Driver With 58 Close Contacts Tests Positive for Covid-19

What’s new: An online ride-hailing driver has been confirmed as testing positive for Covid-19 in Beijing. 58 close contacts of the driver are now subject to mandatory isolation and medical observation, local health authorities said during a press conference on Saturday.

The 53-year-old man, who was isolated last week due to being a close contact of a previously confirmed patient in the suburb Shunyi district, tested positive of the new coronavirus infection on Thursday. He was then transferred to hospital for treatment.

Xu Hejian, a spokesman for the municipal government, said that as of Thursday, the city has recorded a total of 25 cases in the latest outbreak which first emerged in mid-December in Shunyi area. Xu added that the outbreak has been “primarily brought under control.”

Why it matters: Confirmation of the drive’s positive result raises the possibility that the infection has spread across further across the capital. In response to the small scale outbreak in the northeastern Shunyi district, the local government has been conducting a sweeping recheck of high risk groups who had previously been tested. As of 3pm on Saturday, more than 108,200 residents have tested negative.

Currently, the captial city has a total of seven “medium-risk” areas, including six in Shunyi and one in the neighboring Chaoyang district. Local health authorities have concluded that the source of the outbreak was imported by a 28-year-old Indonesian man who arrived in Beijing on Dec. 10 and tested positive more than two weeks later.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use.

Contact reporter Lu Zhenhua ( and editor Marcus Ryder (

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