Virus patient at hospital HQ same day as strikers - RTHK
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Virus patient at hospital HQ same day as strikers

2020-02-17 HKT 18:08
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  • The virus patient went to the Hospital Authority's headquarters on February 7, the same day striking public hospital staff occupied the building. Photo: RTHK
    The virus patient went to the Hospital Authority's headquarters on February 7, the same day striking public hospital staff occupied the building. Photo: RTHK
Timmy Sung reports
Health officials on Monday confirmed that an engineer who has been diagnosed with the new coronavirus held meetings recently with Hospital Authority staff, including on the day when hundreds of striking medical workers occupied the authority's headquarters.

The man, 45, is a colleague of a 54-year-old resident of Taikoo Shing who was confirmed to have the virus on Sunday. The older man's wife has also since tested positive.

The two new infections were confirmed on Monday evening.

But the territory has already seen another confirmed case, involving a 69-year-old retired man who lives with his daughter in Tseung Kwan O. The man, who has not travelled overseas recently, began showing symptoms on February 8 and visited a doctor three times before being admitted to hospital on Saturday.

The elderly man's confirmed infection brings the total so far in Hong Kong to 58. His daughter has not shown any symptoms so far, officials said.

At a press briefing, health officials said the two engineers attended a 20-minute-long meeting at the Hospital Authority's headquarters on February 6.

The 45-year-old man had another brief meeting there the following day, which was when hundreds of striking doctors, nurses and medical assistants occupied the authority's headquarters in Argyle Street as they demanded a full closure of the border with the mainland.

The engineer lives in Tsz Wan Shan and visited Vietnam at the end of last month. He works on a different floor of the company's office in North Point to his infected colleague, but the two meet up from time to time for discussions.

The latest patient developed a fever on Wednesday and went to the doctor the day after, before being admitted to hospital on Sunday.

A chief manager at the Hospital Authority, Dr Lau Ka-hin, said his five HA colleagues who attended the meetings with the two men had not yet been put into isolation or quarantine.

"They have no symptoms at this moment. We have asked our staff to check their body temperatures daily, as well as to report any symptoms or discomfort to their supervisors in the coming week," Lau said.

The Hospital Authority said earlier that areas of its HQ where the two engineers had been have since been cleaned and disinfected.
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Last updated: 2020-02-17 HKT 20:32