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Elderly home to be evacuated over Covid outbreak

2020-08-09 HKT 17:14
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  • Elderly home to be evacuated over Covid outbreak
Health officials say more than 40 residents and staff of the Sage Kai Yip Home for the Elderly at Kowloon Bay will have to be quarantined, after two more people there came down with Covid-19, with another testing preliminary positive.

The Centre for Health Protection’s Chuang Shuk-kwan said she was worried about the possibility of a large-scale outbreak at the home, and said arrangements would be made to evacuate the facility as soon as possible.

Her comments came as Hong Kong reported 72 new Covid-19 infections on Sunday, including nine linked to overseas travel.

Thirty-nine of the local patients were linked to previous cases, including clusters at the Star Global sales company and the Kwai Chung container terminal.

The source of infection for 24 other people was unknown.

One case involves an Indonesian domestic helper, who had stayed at the premises of a Tsuen Wan employment agency with four others last month.

However, the four had tested negative for the virus.

Meanwhile, the Hospital Authority also expressed concern over an elderly patient who only tested positive for the virus after undergoing a third test.

The 70-year-old man was admitted to Kwong Wah Hospital last Monday and had repeatedly tested negative until a preliminary positive came back on Saturday.

When asked if the patient could have caught the virus from the hospital’s surveillance ward or intensive care unit where he had stayed, the HA's chief manager, Lau Ka-hin, said it is much more likely that he had been infected before he was admitted.

“All the patients were wearing their masks well. And there was adequate air change and spacing. There are many reasons why we cannot find a positive test. First of all, maybe the patient had a very low viral load in the early phase of the disease ... Second, it may also involve the sampling method and also the sensitivity of the tests”, Lau said.

The imported Covid-19 cases announced on Sunday include six crew members of a cargo ship which came from Malaysia. The other infected people arrived in Hong Kong from the US, Gambia and the Philippines.