People who have attended seven dance clubs this month were instructed on Tuesday to take a coronavirus test by Thursday or face a fine as the government steps up efforts to stem a fast-growing cluster of Covid-19 cases.
The seven venues were added to a mandatory testing list that already covered 14 dance clubs, whose visitors had been given a deadline of the end of Tuesday for submitting samples for testing.
A further 50 cases linked to the growing cluster were identified on Monday, taking the total to 132. Dancers and teachers attending different clubs are thought to be the cause of the wide spread of the cluster.
A spokesman for the Food and Health Bureau said: "Upon further contact tracing by the Centre for Health Protection, we found that large group gathering activities in other premises were involved for some recent confirmed cases.
"Therefore, the government published another compulsory testing notice, which requires persons who had been to seven other premises to undergo testing."
The clubs in question are: Betterment Banquet Hall of Nob Hill Square in Mei Foo; Hsin Kuang Banquet Hall of Belair Gardens Commercial Complex in Sha Tin; Hit Power Entertainment Company of Abba Commercial Building in Aberdeen; The World Dancer Performing Arts Federation of Park Hovan Commercial Building and Starway Music Studio of Mary Building, both in Tsim Sha Tsui; Victor Yang Studio of Tung Lee Building in Cheung Sha Wan and a club located at the Double Happiness Restaurant in Kai Yip Commercial Centre, Kowloon Bay.
People can take tests in five ways: picking up specimen collection packs at 47 designated clinics and returning them to collection points; attending approved private laboratories; going to four government testing centres; visiting seven mobile collection centres or going to Hospital Authority facilities.
Officials are recommending that people collect a specimen pack rather than going to the four testing centres, where long queues formed on Monday as people hurried to take a test before Tuesday's deadline.
"If persons who are subject to compulsory testing have symptoms, they should seek medical attention immediately and undergo testing as instructed by a medical professional," the spokesman added. "They should not attend the community testing centres."
Anyone who is identified as having failed to comply with a mandatory testing order faces a HK$2,000 penalty and an order to take a test.
Anyone who continues to refuse a test faces prosecution, with jail sentences of up to six months and fines of up to HK$25,000. Many people complained that the arrangements were not convenient.
Seven dance clubs added to mandatory testing list
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