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HK records 64 new and 60 preliminary positive Covid-19 cases, plus 1 death

18 July 2020

By The SUN

People are again warned to avoid going out, as 124 confirmed and suspected Covid-19 cases were reported today

Hong Kong may have recorded the biggest number of coronavirus cases today, Jul 18, with 64 confirmed and 60 preliminary positive cases.

They brought Hong Kong’s total confirmed cases to 1,778. Of today’s new cases, 60 were locally acquired.

The figures nearly breached the record 67 new cases reported on Thursday, Jul 16, of which 63 were community transmissions. But on that day, there were only 10 preliminary positive cases.
Also today, a 94-year-old male patient died at about 10am at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, becoming the 12th recorded fatality from the disease, and the fourth in four days. The patient, who had underlying illnesses, had been critically ill since Jul 13.

Dr Chuang Shuk-kwan of the Centre for Health Protection said there appears to be no end in sight for the spread of the infection, as 35 of the new cases are of unknown origin.

“Judging from the number of cases recorded these past few days, the trend is still going up,” she said at today’s press briefing. “I appeal to members of the public to please stay at home as far as possible and avoid gathering activities.”

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Of the four imported cases, one was a Filipina domestic helper who flew in from Manila aboard a Cathay Pacific flight. The three others are a pilot from Kazakhstan, a returnee from Pakistan, and a seafarer from India.

There was also a foreign domestic helper who tested positive along with a family member, but the nationality of both was not disclosed.

Of around 400 cases recorded since the third wave of infection occurred starting in the first week of July, nearly half were reported in Tsz Wan Shan, where a cluster of cases were found in an elderly home, a wet market, and several restaurants.

According to Chuang, between 150 and 160 cases were recorded in the district up until yesterday.

A shuttered Bun Kee Congee & Noodle House: many of the first cases in Tsz Wan Shan were linked to it
Today, several more cases were linked to three restaurants in the area: Bun Kee Congee & Noodle House, Windsor and Green River restaurants.

The linked cases included two waitresses at Via Restaurant on Tung Choi street in Mong Kok, two friends who played ping-pong at the Victory Table Tennis Sports Centre in San Po Kong, along with another who tested positive earlier, and three more staff of the Tuen Mun Eye Centre.

At least 123 employees of the eye centre will undergo virus tests, after several patients tested positive earlier. Of the 35 close contacts of the infected patients, 30 tested negative while two were found infected. Three more results are still pending.

A team of health experts visited the eye centre earlier today to investigate and try to find out the source of infection.

Another cluster of cases involve four people who tested positive after a gathering in the Pier Market at the Grand Tower in Mong Kok, where about 80 people seated at about a dozen table had dinner and sang karaoke together. One other guest at the gathering tested preliminary positive.
The untraceable cases include a 16-year-old girl who studies at True Light Girls’ College in Yau Ma Tei, a 42-year-old hawker in the same district, a 61-year-old male singer in Tsim Sha Tsui, a 72-year-old male cleaner at the airport, a 50-year-old female shop attendant at the Island Resort Mall in Siu Sai Wan, and a customs officer working at the North Point Customs Headquarters, and his wife.

Dr Lau Ka-hin, chief manager of the Hospital Authority, said also among the new cases is a 76-year-old patient who tested positive while confined in the general ward of Queen Elizabeth Hospital, along with three other people.

He tested positive yesterday after a nasal swab, after testing negative during repeated tests in the past few days.

Lau said that 421 Covid-19 patients are confined in 14 hospitals. Of these, 13 are in critical condition, 11 are in serious condition, and the rest are stable.

Ten more patients were discharged today, for a total of 1,274 recoveries.

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