China on Monday began emergency mass coronavirus testing in the eastern port city of Qingdao.

Qingdao Municipal Health Commission confirmed that six virus cases were reported, while another six asymptomatic cases had been found until Sunday, China Daily reported. 

Authorities began the mass nucleic acid testing free of cost for over nine million residents of the city. The testing drive is expected to be completed in next five days. 

The new cases are said to be linked to Qingdao Pulmonary Hospital where COVID-19 patients arriving from overseas are being treated in isolation.

Non-COVID-19 patients have been barred from coming to the hospital under new guidelines while all contacts of the fresh cases and medical workers are undergoing testing.

According to China’s National Health Commission, the country’s mainland reported 32 new asymptomatic cases, including 29 imported cases, until Sunday night.

There are 395 — including 390 imported — asymptomatic cases still under medical observation in the country. 

China has reported 85,578 confirmed cases, including 4,634 deaths, since the virus detected in Wuhan city last December.

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