In the past two weeks, nucleic acid test booths have sprung up in big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, part of China’s plan to make tests routine and require residents to show negative Covid-19 test results when they go to work, school or use public transport. It involves enormous resources. These test booths are open long hours and there are many because the authorities want to ensure every citizen has access within a 15-minute walk . Ma Xiaowei, head of National Health Commission (NHC), wrote in Qiushi journal this week the government planned to set up separate teams to do nucleic acid tests so healthcare workers would not be called on to do the task, but it would take time to form the teams. Large amounts of resources have been pulled from elsewhere in the healthcare sector for the tests, and resources for other services will inevitably be affected. For example, in Beijing’s Chaoyang district some vaccination centres have already been converted into test centres. The priority for officials is to identify every case – they must keep the number of infections down or risk their careers . However, they should not overlook the importance of vaccinating elderly people which, although still on the government agenda, may not be as immediately pressing to them as keeping the number of Covid-19 cases down. Coronavirus: How Omicron infection boosts immunity in vaccinated Vaccinating the elderly cannot achieve the political goal of reaching zero Covid cases because infection is still possible after vaccination, but it is instrumental in reducing the incidence of death and severe illness. This is the ultimate goal, with the government arguing they must maintain zero-Covid because it is the only way to reduce the number of deaths. Vaccination among the elderly has been improving in the past month, but it still lags behind the national average. Vaccine hesitancy is one major reason, but for the elderly, access is usually the most important factor. Though it is not a prevailing idea, some people ask if testing booths could also be used as vaccination centres. The plan would not be impossible to execute, although it requires careful infection control measures and design of the premises, such as separate rooms to carry out vaccinations and tests, separate queues, specific ventilation design and the teams performing the two tasks must be separated. But if China is willing to pour so many resources into Covid-19 control, why not strive for vaccination goals too?