Secretary for Health Prof Lo Chung-mau contended that the key to reducing community transmission of the coronavirus and infected cases is better detection and isolation measures.
Prof Lo said to the reporters at a press briefing on the afternoon of 8 July that the Hong Kong government will try to perfect the current coronavirus detection and testing measure, making the polymerase chain reaction testing much more accessible and efficient for the public.
“In that case, then we can detect and isolate the infected minority, rather than imposing all these more strict social distancing measures to the non-infected majority.”
The Centre investigates 2748 cases in Hong Kong for Health Protection, and a new 197 cases are reported. Based on the trend of the number of instances of coronavirus infection in the past few weeks, Prof Lo predicted that roughly a doubled number of cases is expected in the next two weeks.
“I think we are here to shape the future. We will have to carry out more vigilant and more precise testing, and more vigilant isolation for the infected minority, including home isolation and (making use of) specific isolation facilities to make sure that those infected people are not walking around in our community and causing community outbreaks.
“I think with better detection measures and isolation measures, we will be able to reduce the community transmission and reduce the R0 (the basic reproduction number) hopefully to below one, and then we will be seeing a decrease in the total number of new cases every day.”
Due to a surge in cases testing positive for the nucleic acid test, 60 regions are now included in a compulsory testing notice, which also covers five buildings in Diamond Hill, Tuen Mun, Yau Tong and Tung Chung where some sewage samples tested positive for the virus.
The Hong Kong government also set up or reopened the mobile specimen collection stations at Chi Fu Fa Yuen in Pok Fu Lam, Hong Keung Court in Lok Fu, Ocean Pointe in Sham Tseng, Cheung Ching Estate in Tsing Yi and Shek Yam East Estate in Kwai Chung on 9 July. Another change made is the relocation of the community testing center from the Ground Transportation Lounge of Hong Kong International Airport to the airport’s South Transition Deck at L6.
Meanwhile, the Housing Department and respective district offices will distribute COVID-19 rapid testing kits to relevant residents in Sha Tin, Kwai Tsing and Tsuen Wan where high viral loads are present. Cleaning workers and property management staff working in those estates will also be covered.