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Balanced approach to curbing virus

(To watch the full media session with sign language interpretation, click here.)   Chief Executive John Lee today said he has asked the Secretary for Health to review the current anti-epidemic measures, aiming to strike a balance between containing the virus spread and reducing the inconvenience to travellers.   Meeting the media this morning before chairing the first meeting of the new-term Executive Council, Mr Lee said the Secretary for Health is considering how the duration of quarantine should be handled.   “I am giving him time to look at the statistics so that he will formulate some options for me to consider.”   At the same time, the Government will strive to keep the COVID-19 pandemic under control and protect those who are more vulnerable to the virus, he noted.   “One of the important measures is to make good use of the polymerase chain reaction-based nucleic acid test so that we can be certain that we will be able to identify those who are infected early, separate

7 imported COVID-19 cases reported

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating seven additional imported COVID-19 cases involving patients who arrived from the UK, Turkey and the Philippines.   One of the cases involves a 68-year-old man who carries the L452R mutant strain, but not the N501Y or E484K mutant genes.   The patient, who stayed in Sunrise, Discovery Bay, travelled to the UK on August 15 and returned to Hong Kong on August 25. His specimen collected upon arrival at Hong Kong International Airport tested negative for COVID-19.   He developed symptoms including a cough, sore throat and running nose since August 25. Subsequently, his sample collected on August 27 at a designated quarantine hotel tested positive for the virus.   The centre is also investigating a re-positive overseas COVID-19 case carrying the L452R mutant strain which involves a 29-year-old woman.   She travelled to the UK, Spain and Portugal at the end of June and returned to Hong Kong on August 19. Her specimen collected upon arrival at the airport tested negative for COVID-19.   The patient received two doses of the BioNTech vaccine in Hong Kong in March and April. Her blood specimen collected on June 23 tested positive for anti-spike protein antibodies.   She stayed in a designated quarantine hotel from August 19 to 25. She lives at 208, Shek O Village in Shek O and went there after completing quarantine. Her specimen collected on August 27 at a community testing centre according to the compulsory testing requirement tested positive.   The patient said she developed symptoms in early August and tested positive for COVID-19 in Portugal. She underwent self-isolation and tested negative before departure. She was asymptomatic after returning to Hong Kong.   As a prudent measure, the buildings where the two patients had stayed and places they had visited during the incubation period were included in a compulsory testing notice.   Meanwhile, as Philippine Airlines flight PR300 from Manila and Turkish Airlines flight TK083 from Istanbul each had three passengers on board confirmed infected with COVID-19 by arrival testing, the Department of Health has prohibited the landing of the airlines' passenger flights from the two places from today to September 11.   Regarding the operators of goods vessels Asia Energy and Thor Monadic who were suspected of providing false information during the application for free pratique, the department has reported the cases to Police for their suspected contravention of the Prevention & Control of Disease Regulation.   A total of 68 cases were reported in Hong Kong in the past 14 days. One is a local case with an unknown infection source, while the rest are imported.   For information and health advice on COVID-19, visit the Government's dedicated webpage.
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