Teams cater to capital's communities

2021-02-03 12:05:43

A staff member of the subdistrict office of Tiangongyuan in Beijing's Daxing district delivers food to residents in home quarantine outside Ronghui community on Jan 20. Photo/Xinhua BEIJING-As a new day dawned, Gao Xiaolin left behind her old identity as a fresh graduate and embraced her new role as a frontline worker helping to curb the spread of COVID-19. Gao, 23, entered the workforce in the subdistrict office of Tiangongyuan in Beijing's Daxing district on Jan 18, one day after the first two COVID-19 cases were reported in the local residential community of Ronghui. Having completed her registration, Gao was assigned to the community to conduct door-to-door inquiries. "I was scared at first seeing personnel covered from head to toe in personal protective equipment helping transfer the close contacts to a centralized quarantine area," she recalls. "But as soon as I put on my own protective gear, I felt a sense of responsibility." Since the sporadic resurgence of COVID-19 cases in Daxing recently, nearly 2,000 subdistrict workers and volunteers have been stationed in the communities under lockdown, organizing nucleic acid tests, going door-to-door to collect garbage, and providing home-quarantined residents with food, medicine and other necessities. Nearly 30 locally transmitted confirmed COVID-19 cases had been reported in the district as of Thursday, mostly in Ronghui. In addition to the close contacts being transferred to hotels for centralized quarantine, nearly 24,000 residents are currently undergoing home quarantine in Ronghui and four other residential communities of Tiangongyuan. A resident in Ronghui says over the phone that he and his family were caught unprepared by the situation with little food in stock. He had planned to shop for supplies online, only to find that delivery services to the area had been suspended. "It's the community workers who have helped relieve our worries," says the resident, who only gave his surname as Wang. The workers solicit their requests via a WeChat group, make the purchases and deliver the items to their doorsteps, according to Wang. The community, with over 3,700 households in 15 buildings, has been divided into 17 grids, with personnel designated to each grid to distribute supplies. According to the bureau of commerce of Daxing, suppliers had delivered 80,000 orders as of last week, with some 15,000 orders delivered, on average, every day. "We sort the materials according to building and gate numbers, and distribute them immediately after disinfection," Gao says. Shi Xiangyi, a doctor from a local hospital in Beizangcun township, is stationed in a mobile medical services van. The vehicle stays at the community from 8:30 am to 8:30 pm every day to provide medicine to residents with chronic diseases. "We register the demand based on the prescriptions provided by the volunteers and pack the medicine for delivery upon its arrival," she says, adding that it usually takes no more than a day for residents to receive their medicine. Li Zhonghua, executive president of the hospital, says the residents can call their family doctors if they need a consultation, and the medical bills of those with health insurance will be covered. To minimize contact with people outside the community, Gao opts not to take public transport when she commutes every day. Instead, she asks her colleagues to give her a lift. Her mother, a property manager at another community in Daxing, is busy with the coronavirus control work herself and supports her daughter's work.