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270 COVID-19 cases recorded

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 270 additional COVID-19 cases, of which 116 were detected by nucleic acid tests and 154 were identified via rapid antigen tests.   Among the new cases, 31 are imported while the rest are locally infected.   Since the onset of the fifth wave of the epidemic, 1,199,227 people have contracted the virus. One more patient passed away, bringing the total number of deaths in the fifth wave to 9,163.   Moreover, the Hospital Authority announced that a staff member of Haven of Hope Hospital’s catering department tested positive through a rapid antigen test on Thursday. Contact tracing revealed that four more employees from the same department who had dined or stayed in the same accommodation as the patient had also caught COVID-19. These four staff and seven other staff who have been identified as close contacts will be quarantined.   As a precautionary measure, the hospital’s catering department has temporarily suspended o

Re-positive COVID-19 case reported

The "cruise-to-nowhere" itinerary of a cruise ship scheduled today was cancelled after the Department of Health identified a suspected re-positive case in the regular COVID-19 testing for crew members.   The Centre for Health Protection said the case involves 40-year-old crew member of Spectrum of the Seas. He had received two doses of Sinovac vaccination in April and May.   According to information provided by the cruise company, the crew member tested positive for COVID-19 in Malaysia in July. He tested negative for the virus for more than 10 times after he arrived in Hong Kong in August.   His sample collected on October 19 on board the cruise tested positive for the virus with a very low viral load. The patient has been asymptomatic.   Based on the epidemiological and laboratory findings, the case is compatible with a suspected re-positive overseas case.   Upon identification of the suspected re-positive case, the sailing of the cruise ship scheduled for departure from the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal at 7pm was cancelled in accordance with the contingency management mechanism devised for "cruise-to-nowhere" itineraries.   The patient was on board the ship scheduled to embark on the trip with about 1,200 passengers. About 1,000 passengers boarded the ship today, but he did not have direct contact with the passengers while on board.   The patient had worked on the same ship in two other cruise trips within this month. As a prudent measure, the ship will be included in a compulsory testing notice under which people who had been on board for more than two hours from 30 September to October 21 have to undergo testing by October 23. Close contacts will be put under quarantine.   Epidemiological investigation and contact tracing of the case will continue.
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