Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) has announced a long rumoured online mask-distribution system to help counter the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Set to come into play tomorrow, March 12th, and designed to ease the burden on pharmacies which for one month have been distributing limited numbers of masks to the public, the new online ordering system work on a first come, first served basis, and will require National Health Insurance Cards be used in confirming orders.
Each order will be limited to three masks per packet, and will be logged until Wednesday, March 18th with messages then sent to mobile phones a day later confirming whether or not purchases have been successful. Individuals securing masks in this manner would then be guided through the payment and pick up process.
Any person successful in ordering a mask will be able to collect their orders at a local convenience store between March 26th and April 1st by showing government issued ID, or National Health Insurance cards.
Fees for the service will total NT $22, with each mask costing $5, in addition to a $7 charge for shipping.
It is thought the new system will help those who work or must commute from early morning to pick up masks at a time Taiwan is still seeing long lines outside pharmacies across the country waiting for mask deliveries.
In related news, the CECC also announced yesterday that the number of cases of COVID-19 in Taiwan has risen to 47, from 45.
Case number 46 is a young man related to earlier individuals infected with the virus, while case number 47, another male, has recently returned from a trip to the European Union.