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HK OFW released from 14-day quarantine

07 February 2020

By The SUN


The Ma On Shan estate where the Filipina stayed with her employer's parents visiting from Wuhan

A Filipina domestic worker has been released from a 14-day quarantine in Hong Kong after she showed no signs of having acquired the highly contagious novel coronavirus.

Consul General Raly Tejada made the announcement of the Filipina’s release in a message: “Pleased to inform that the 1st Filipino domestic  worker quarantined has been given a clean bill of health and therefore has been released by the Health Department.

ConGen Tejada said the worker is already resting in her employer’s home which has been thoroughly sanitized by health authorities.
“She has the Consulate’s number and has been asked to call us if she needs any assistance. So far she has not called and we will respect her privacy if that’s what she wishes,” he said.

The unnamed Filipina was put under quarantine at the Lady MacLehose Holiday Camp on Jan. 24 after her employer’s parents who were visiting from Wuhan City in China, the epicenter of the contagion, tested positive for coronavirus.

Her female employer who lives in Lake Silver residential block in Ma On Shan, was found with a slight fever, and was initially placed under hospital quarantine. However, she was moved to the quarantine center after being declared free of the coronavirus.
 
ConGen Tejada says the Consulate has offered help to the two quarantined Filipina workers
A second Filipina domestic worker who has also been placed under quarantine is said to be likewise healthy and asymptomatic, said Tejada, adding “we hope that she will released after 14 days.

The second helper was isolated after her 39-year-old male employer who had traveled to Wuhan, was found infected with the disease, and eventually died of heart failure. He was the first to die of the infection in Hong Kong, and the second outside of China.


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The patient took the high-speed railway link from Wuhan to Hong Kong, and arrived at the West Rail station on Jan. 21. He fell ill on Jan 31 and was initially admitted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Yaumatei, before being moved to an isolation ward in Princess Margaret Hospital.

The Filipina lived with her employer and his 72-year-old mother in a flat in Whampoa Gardens in Hung Hom.

His mother was later found to have acquired the disease, although she did not go abroad  during the 14-day incubation period for the virus. The infection alarmed experts as it was the first verified human-to-human transmission of the coronavirus in Hong Kong.
 
It is now feared the coronavirus has started spreading within the community 
However, in at least three subsequent confirmed cases, the source of the infection could no longer be traced, leading to fears the coronavirus has begun spreading in the community.

Hong Kong now has 25 (updated) confirmed cases of coronavirus infection. Overall, more than 31,400 cases have been confirmed, mostly in China. The death toll stands at 638, nearly the same number of people who died from Sars (severe acute respiratory syndrome) 17 years ago, with Hong Kong as the epicenter.

In a further tightening of controls to combat the coronavirus contagion, the Hong Kong government has announced the forced quarantine of all people coming from the Mainland, including residents, from midnight tonight, Friday.

Senior medical students at Hong Kong’s universities have been asked to volunteer their services to help monitor the quarantined people.
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