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Patients stay home, their families go to camp: expert

2022-02-10 HKT 12:36
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  • Yuen Kwok-yung said it is paramount that steps are taken to protect the medical system and the elderly. File photo: RTHK
    Yuen Kwok-yung said it is paramount that steps are taken to protect the medical system and the elderly. File photo: RTHK
An expert advising the government on the Covid-19 pandemic says patients with no or mild symptoms should self-isolate at home if hospitals become overwhelmed, but their family members who are at high risk should be sent to a centralised facility to avoid cross-infections.

Yuen Kwok-yung made the suggestion just days after health officials said some close contacts have to be quarantined at home, and patients with no or mild symptoms may eventually have to stay home until they recover.

“For people who have mild symptoms and don’t have to be hospitalised, they should stay home. On the other hand, for the unvaccinated elderly or chronic patients they live with, they are at high risk,” Yuen noted.

“And, say, empty the AsiaWorld-Expo and clean it up. Put these high-risk elderly people in and protect them. After all it’s difficult to avoid cross-infections at home,” he said.

“The mindset has to be reversed, because the resources and manpower cannot handle the epidemic anymore,” he told a radio programme on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the University of Hong Kong microbiologist said other people living with the patients should wear two masks, open most windows in the house and wipe things the patient touches with disinfectant.

The patient should also stay in his or her room and wear two masks when he or she eventually comes out, he said.