Hundreds of beds are set up at AsiaWorld-Expo, a new space designated for stable COVID-19 patients by local health authorities starting from Aug 1, 2020. (CALVIN NG / CHINA DAILY)
HONG KONG – Health authorities decided to reopen the AsiaWorld-Expo treatment facility for COVID-19 patients as Hong Kong reported 6,617 new cases on Monday.
Larry Lee Lap-yip, chief manager (Integrated Clinical Services) of the Hospital Authority, said in a press briefing that they decided to activate 200 beds at the AWE facility due to the increasing number of COVID patients admitted in hospitals.
Albert Au Ka-wing, principal medical and health officer of the Centre for Health Protection’s communicable disease branch, said in the same briefing that the new cases included 6,380 local infections and 237 imported cases
“Since early August, the number of those who require oxygen and respirators have been rising gradually. This has put pressure on our hospitals,” Lee said, adding that the HA will also redeploy 100 staff members.
Lee said 2,100 patients were being treated in public hospitals as of Monday, including 297 new patients. Forty-eight were in critical condition, including 11 in intensive care units, and 35 in serious condition.
He added that 135 patients under 11 years old were also hospitalized while five patients, aged 63 to 96, passed away, bringing the toll during the fifth wave to 9,397.
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Albert Au Ka-wing, principal medical and health officer of the Centre for Health Protection’s communicable disease branch, said in the same briefing that the new cases included 6,380 local infections and 237 imported cases.
Of the imported cases, 104 were detected at the airport, 23 at quarantine hotels, and 110 in community testing centers. More than 10 cases each came from the United Kingdom, Thailand, the United States, India, the Philippines, Canada, Australia, and Singapore. The rest were from 33 other countries.
Au said 13 care homes for the elderly and the disabled in Sha Tin, Sham Shui Po, Tsuen Wan, Northern District, Tuen Mun, Wong Tai Sin, Kwun Tong, and Tsing Yi had new infections.
One care home for the elderly reported nine residents and five staff members testing positive for the virus, Au said.
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“We are worried about the surge in cases. In the past week, a number of clusters have occurred in residential homes due initially to infections of staff members,” he added.
Au also said that 83 schools reported 127 students and 33 teaching staff members getting infected. Seven schools in Tai Po, Tuen Mun, Sha Tin, and Wan Chai had to suspend some in-person classes for one week due to the infections.