What’s behind Hong Kong’s third wave of Covid-19 infections?

Hong Kong has had its ups and downs throughout the early phases of the coronavirus pandemic however its reaction was considered a text e-book response because it contained the virus shortly. But then there was Research , and now a third.
Despite being part of China and sharing a border with the mainland to the north, Hong Kong saved its infection numbers low and was able to avoid overly draconian lockdowns when in comparison with other parts of China. Now the Hong Kong government officials are warning hospitals that they might face collapse if it doesn’t stem the growing infections quickly, and it’s simply had a document excessive number of new infections in a day.

SOURCE: worldometers.info
Hong Kong had its first Covid-19 cases within the last week of January however infection numbers remained comparatively low and the spread was managed fairly quickly. Hong Kong had seen it before with that other coronavirus an infection, SARS. Between 2002-2004 the world had a brief Coronavirus preview. In Hong Kong 1,755 people had been contaminated, 299 died and the virus had a 17% fatality fee.
In March this yr Hong Kong had a 2nd wave of Covid-19 infections after overseas college students and residents began returning to the territory, leading to an imported spike of recent infections.
Hong Kong banned all non-residents from entering from abroad, and everybody who returned was required to endure a Covid-19 take a look at and obligatory 14 day quarantine. Electronic bracelets were put on new arrivals to track their movements and and make sure they stayed at residence. Masks had been necessary and social distancing measures have been rigorously applied. It labored and the infection fee rapidly dropped.
So what has introduced on this third wave of infections? Local well being officials imagine there are 2 key flaws within the system.
First, many returnees opted to quarantine for 14 days at residence – an arrangement that’s widespread in lots of international locations including the UK – rather than in quarantine camps. But other people within the home usually are not underneath any form of restriction, and will nonetheless be coming and going.
Then there was the government’s choice to exempt a quantity of teams of individuals from testing and quarantine once they got here to Hong Kong. They exempted about 200,000 people, including people arriving from the sea, aircrews and executives of firms listed on the HK inventory trade, from quarantine. At the time the federal government mentioned the exceptions were wanted to make sure “normal every day operations continued” in Hong Kong, or because their “travel was essential to the city’s financial development”.
Epidemiologist Dr. Joseph Tsang says the exemptions were a big loophole that elevated the risk of an infection. The authorities initially claimed the quarantine exemptions have been not to blame, however later admitted there was evidence that the exemptions were, indeed, behind the newest 3rd wave of infections.
Then there was the case, earlier this week, when a overseas pilot was reportedly spotted sightseeing around Hong Kong whereas waiting for is Covid-19 check results.
A professor of epidemiology at the University of Hong Kong, Benjamin Cowling, says Hong Kong’s expertise with quarantine problems might additionally happen in different international locations.
“In the UK, you even have a 14 day quarantine at house, so you would have the same potential concern with leakage.”
“In New Zealand and Australia they’ve a compulsory hotel quarantine coverage, which is an efficient concept… although there’s the difficulty of who pays for it.”
“Like Hong Kong, the UK additionally exempts certain travellers from border guidelines, including drivers of products automobiles, seafarers and aircrew.”
Thailand additionally had a “scare’ when an Egyptian soldier slipped via the quarantine system from an “exemption” allowed by the Thai government. He was found to be Covid-19 positive after leaving the nation, but not before wandering around Rayong buying centres during his transient keep in the nation.
There was additionally the 9 year outdated daughter of a diplomat who was found to be contaminated when her household was staying in a apartment in downtown Bangkok. Again, the family had been exempted as her father was a diplomat.
Hong Kong had 149 cases yesterday, probably the most ever in a 24 hour period. In total the SEZ has registered a total of three,152 Covid-19 cases and 25 deaths..