July 19, 2022
HONG KONG – Hong Kong recorded 3,436 new COVID-19 cases on Monday as the number of residents who have taken a fourth vaccine jab topped 180,000.
Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the communicable disease branch of the Centre for Health Protection, said in a news briefing that the new cases comprised 3,182 local infections and 254 imported cases. Three more COVID-19 patients passed away, bringing the city’s toll to 9,227.
Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the communicable disease branch of the Centre for Health Protection, said in a news briefing that the new cases comprised 3,182 local infections and 254 from imported cases
Chuang added that the imported cases included 64 from the United Kingdom, 24 from Thailand, 21 from Australia, 16 from Singapore, 14 from the United States, and 12 from India.
She said a school bus service at St. Catherine’s International Kindergarten in Kowloon Tong had four new infections.
They involved four students who took Bus 18 in the morning. Six students, one driver, one caretaker, and one teacher who rode the bus in the afternoon tested positive earlier, Chuang said.
She added that the other bus passengers will be quarantined while two classes at the school had to be suspended for one week after they reported cases involving students who did not ride the bus.
“We are very careful. We hope it is not a large-scale transmission. We really don’t want to close the entire school willy-nilly,” Chuang said.
“They’ve already changed the buses and we’ve advised the concerned classes to suspend face-to-face teaching. Hopefully, this will help curb the spread among the classes,” she added.
A total of 548 schools reported 888 cases on Monday involving 701 students and 137 teaching staff members. Chuang added that of the 888 infections, 110 cases tested positive today while the rest were on previous days.
She also said that 82 suspected cases involving the Omicron variant BA.2.12.1 were detected, including 44 that were untraceable. Thirty BA.4 or BA.5 infections were also found.
Larry Lee Lap-yip, chief manager (Integrated Clinical Services) of the Hospital Authority, said at the same briefing that three COVID-19 patients, two women and a man aged 58 to 101 years old, passed away.
He added that 17 patients were in critical condition as of Monday, including four receiving intensive care, while 38 were in serious condition.
A spokesman for the Environment and Ecology Bureau said Permanent Secretary for Environment and Ecology and Director of Environmental Protection Janice Tse tested positive for COVID-19 through a rapid antigen test.
Tse, who is undergoing isolation, last went to work on July 15 and has no recent travel history. She wore masks and followed social distancing measures at work, including taking RAT tests daily. Her office has been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
Meanwhile, over 180,000 people in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region have taken the fourth dose of COVID-19 vaccines, official data showed.
Since the start of a mass inoculation program in February last year, about 6.76 million people, or 92.8 percent of the eligible population in Hong Kong, have taken at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccines, while over 6.49 million, or 89.2 percent of the eligible population, have taken two doses.
As of Monday, 65.8 percent of the eligible people in Hong Kong have taken the third dose.
Postal services to Macao SAR suspended
Hongkong Post also announced on Monday evening that all postal services to the Macao Special Administrative Region will be suspended with immediate effect until further notice due to the pandemic situation there.