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Macau reports reinfection of HK Covid-19 patient

16 June 2021

By The SUN


The reinfected patient entered Macau through the HK-Macau-Zhuhai bridge

Macau has informed Hong Kong authorities that an 18-year-old local male patient who tested positive for Covid-19 in the city in December was found to carry the coronavirus again.

According to a statement issued by the Centre for Health Protection today, Jun 16, the patient was found positive for the virus on Dec 16, 2020 and was deemed linked to another local infection. He recovered and was discharged from hospital on Dec. 30.

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He took a test for Covid-19 on Jun 13 this year on the way to Macau and was found negative. But two days later, while in quarantine in Macau he tested weakly positive. A subsequent test showed he was positive for antibody against the coronavirus.

The CHP said it is following up the case with the Macau health authority, including comparing the genetic sequencing of the samples taken from the patient.


In the meantime, those identified as close contacts of the patient will be moved to a quarantine center, and the building where he had resided, which is Wah Chun House in Wah Fu Estate, Pok Fu Lam, will be put under a compulsory testing notice.

Meanwhile, only one imported case was reported in Hong Kong today, involving a 45-year-old man who had flown in from Sri Lanka. He was asymptomatic.

At the same time, health experts have discounted the possibility that the rare mutant strain first found in a 17-year-old local school girl earlier this month had come from a pack of frozen crocodile spare ribs in her family’s refrigerator.

Tests showed that the frozen meat package was contaminated with the virus, so health authorities immediately ordered its importer to stop selling frozen crocodile ribs, and provide samples for testing.  


However, during talks with investigators the girl reportedly admitted having sneezed on the package, suggesting it was she who contaminated the frozen product and not the other way around.

Prof Benjamin Cowling from the University of Hong Kong’s School of Public Health told RTHK it was unlikely the virus had come from the frozen meat, as packaging wasn’t a major route of transmission.

But to be sure, he said the virus samples on the packaged meat be compared with the specimen from the girl, then analyze whether a transmission had occurred, and how.

“Was the virus on the meat packaging first, and then infecting the girl, or was it that the girl had the infection and breathed on the package of meat and that’s how the virus got there – and because it was frozen it was able to stay there?,” Cowling asked.

Despite extensive investigations, the source of the girl’s infection, which ended more than 40 days of no untraceable case being found in Hong Kong, has yet to be determined.

The girl, along with her mother and older sister whom she infected, had no recent travel history.





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