Mass Covid-19 testing detects 3 infected Filipina FDWs

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Domestic workers in Central. (FILE)

Compulsory testing netted three new Covid-19 infections among foreign domestic workers (FDWs)—all Filipinos—with one of them carrying a coronavirus variant.

Residents in over 200 units of Allway Gardens’ Block R in Tsuen Wan will be quarantined after the Centre for Health Protection confirmed the infection of a 48-year-old Filipina domestic worker living there.

The Filipina was found with a SARS-CoV-2 variant with an N501Y strain, but authorities are still testing for the presence of an E484K mutation.

Dr. Chuang Shuk-kwan from the CHP said the Filipina’s infection has yet to be classified. Her travel history and her high level of antibodies may point to her infection being imported, but Chuang said she may have also contracted the infection locally because she had stayed long enough in Hong Kong.

The worker moved in with her employers on Apr. 21, after her visit to the eighth floor of the Immigration Tower and a clinic in Causeway Bay.

She brought her employer’s children to the Annunciation Catholic Kindergarten and had been to several nearby places including the nearby Wellcome supermarket, the D-Park mall, and MetroPlaza in Kwai Chung.

Chuang said the FDW earlier tested negative while under quarantine at a hotel in Wan Chai and on Apr. 25.  But because of the mandatory testing order, she had another Covid-19 screening on May 2 where she tested positive.

People who had visited the places the Filipina went to will have to undergo testing.

The Filipina worker is among the four Covid-19 cases confirmed on Tuesday. Two other confirmed cases had recently arrived from Indonesia, while the third confirmed case was the pregnant Indian housewife found with a variant who lived in Tsim Sha Tsui.

Hong Kong has recorded 11,790 Covid-19 cases to date.

Fewer than 10 people were found preliminarily positive for Covid-19, including two Filipino domestic workers who complied with the government’s compulsory testing order. Chuang said the two were friends: one lived in Block N2 of Kornhill while the other lived in Pok Fu Lam.