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Three Filipina DHs found with mutated virus during mass testing

05 May 2021

 By Daisy CL Mandap 

Rain or shine, FDHs turn out in droves to beat the May 9 deadline for mass testing

The mandatory testing of all foreign domestic helpers which started on May 1 has uncovered three Filipinas with the mutated variants of the coronavirus.

The first case of a 48-year-old helper was reported as confirmed Tuesday, and caused the evacuation and quarantining of residents in more than 200 flats in Allway Gardens in Tsuen Wan where she lives with her employers.

The two others are friends who had been to several places before the mass testing showed they both carried the mutated variant. They had not left Hong Kong recently.

Pindutin para sa detalye

After they were classified as preliminary positive, the buildings where they live, the Royalton in Pokfulam and Kornhill Garden Block N2, were put under lockdown starting at midnight. All residents there will be tested starting this morning.

The helper in Tsuen Wan has been classified by health authorities as “possibly local” with unknown sources. She arrived in Hong Kong from Manila on Mar 31, and was released from her 21-day quarantine at Dorsett Hotel in Wanchai after testing negative for Covid-19.

After leaving the hotel on Apr 21, she went to the eighth floor of the Immigration Tower in Wanchai to apply for a HK ID. Three officers who attended to her have been tested and put under quarantine. The office itself had been disinfected since because of another case.

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The worker also visited a clinic in Causeway Bay for a physical check-up, then moved in with her employer’s family the next day,

Dr Chuang Shuk-kwan of the Centre for Health Protection said the helper tested positive for antibodies, suggesting she had been infected earlier. But she could have also contracted the infection in the community as she had been going around for awhile.

The two other FDWs found with the highly transmissible variant had visited a McDonald’s outlet on Connaught Road, Central on Apr 25, and the Saizeriya restaurant in the Dragon Centre mall in Sham Shui Po on Sunday, May 2. The day before, they went to a small park near Victoria Park in Causeway Bay.


The worker in Kornhill Garden shopped at the Quarry Bay market twice a week, while her friend visited a Fairwood outlet and the market in Kennedy Town.

Their other movements are still being investigated.

One of the infected Filipinas lives in Kornhill Garden in Quarry Bay

Meanwhile, also reported as a preliminary case was the female employer of another Filipina helper in with the first untraceable, locally acquired variant who lives in Caribbean Coast, Tung Chung. The employer, who teaches at primary school, also had the coronavirus mutation.

The woman’s 10-month-old baby girl also tested positive for the variant at the same time as their Filipina helper. 

Tunghayan ang isa na namang kwentong Dream Love.

Both the employer and the helper had been to Citygate Outlets mall in Tung Chung which was visited by two previously identified carriers N501Yvariant, an Indian returnee from Dubai and his girlfriend with whom he lived in Jordan.

Contact tracing showed the Filipina helper was at the mall on the same day that the Indian couple had visited. Earlier investigations showed the helper had the same genetic sequencing for the virus as the Indian returnee, indicating she had been infected by him.

The CHP has issued mandatory testing for anyone who had been to the mall between Apr 11 and 26, when the infected patients had visited. Also at two restaurants visited

The compulsory testing notice was also issued at two restaurants visited by the Indian couple on Apr 10 and 11: Curry Lounge at SeaView Crescent in Tung Chung, and Zaks at Discovery Bay.

Also among four confirmed cases reported Tuesday was a housewife who returned from India a month ago, and was also found to have the mutated virus. The building where she lives in Tsim Sha Tsui was evacuated Monday night following the discovery of her infection.

The two other cases involved foreign domestic helpers who recently arrived from Indonesia.


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