Outbreak rebound feared with 55 Covid-19 cases, over 80 to be confirmed

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Dr. Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the Communicable Disease Branch from the Centre for Health Protection. (Information Services Department/isd.gov.hk)

Concerns over a rebound in Hong Kong’s Covid-19 cases arose after health officials reported 55 new infections on Sunday, with over 80 pending confirmation.

Dr. Chuang Shuk-kwan from the Centre For Health Protection believes the spike may be due to the mandatory testing order placed on an area in Yau Ma Tei and Jordan amid fears of a localised outbreak there.

Sunday’s total coronavirus cases brought the city’s Covid-19 tally to 9,553. Of the infections logged on Sunday, 49 were locally transmitted—with 16 of them having no discernible source to date.

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About 99 cases have been traced to the Yau Tsim Mong district since late December. Chuang believes some of the preliminarily positive Covid-19 cases are residents from that area who got tested.

“But of course the sheer number of cases, so many cases, is a concern—because any one of them may cause a major outbreak in the community and further spread [of Covid-19]” Chuang said.

Three of the cases logged today from Yau Tsim Mong were public toilet cleaners working under the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department. More buildings were also issued mandatory testing orders in the neighbourhood after some people were confirmed to carry the coronavirus.

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The imported Covid-19 cases were 3 females from Indonesia and an arrival from the United States.

A nurse working in the palliative care ward of the Caritas Medical Centre tested preliminarily positive for Covid-19 after her building was placed under mandatory testing. She did not have contact with confirmed patients and she last worked on Jan. 15.

The infected nurse had two close contacts who will undergo 14-day quarantine: another nurse and a patient care assistant who had meals with her.

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