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Most Filipino Covid-19 cases from Insomnia and other bars out of hospital

22 April 2020

By Daisy CL Mandap
The virus first swept through Insomnia in Lan Kwai Fong

Hong Kong’s decision today, Apr 21, to extend the ban on entertainment venues for two more weeks does not come as a surprise, given that most of the locally transmitted cases of Covid-19 came from these places.

Easily the biggest number of infections occurred in the so-called bar cluster, which includes Insomnia in Lan Kwai Fong, Central; Dusk till Dawn and Centre Stage in Wanchai; and All Night Long in Tsim Sha Tsui.

A rough tally based on figures supplied by the Centre for Health Protection shows that no less than 50 of Hong Kong’s total cases of 1,030 were stricken in these bars.
They include at least 14 Filipinos, mostly members of a band that played in all four venues, but also food servers and their family members. The others are customers who visited one or two of the affected bars.

The list does not include 17 other Filipino patients, mostly domestic workers who were either infected in their workplaces, or tested positive after returning to Hong Kong from overseas. Records at the Consulate show 8 of the patients have been discharged, while 9 are still in hospital.

As of this writing, most of the Filipinos in the bar cluster have been discharged. But the 29-year-old Filipino soloist of the band, the first to test positive for the virus in the cluster and identified as Case No 276, is still in hospital.

Dusk till Dawn is one of the bars where the coronavirus spread
Among those discharged are the soloist’s flatmates in Hang Shun Mansions in Wanchai, just above Dusk till Dawn, identified as: Case No 384, 26 years old, female; No 386, (male, 48 years old); No 422 (31, male); No 432 (39, male); No 433 (47, male); No 434 (30, female); No 440 (40, male) and No 501 (35, male).

A couple who played with the band and live together in Mid-Levels have also been discharged. They’re Case Nos 386 (38, male) and 362 (36, female).
A number of food servers and staff at the bars have also recovered and discharged, including a waiter in Insomnia who appears to be the index patient in the cluster.

Case No 394, a 28-year-old male, reportedly started having symptoms as early as Mar 10 but sought treatment only after the soloist was diagnosed with the virus on Mar 23.

Also discharged were two Filipina waitresses: Case No 360, a 30-year-old server at Centre Stage; and Case No 453, 50 years old and female, who works at Insomnia. However, two of their family members are still in hospital: No 877 (39 years old, male) who’s related to 360; and No 930, the 16-year-old son of 453.

Notice of closure on the door of Centre Stage
Among the bar staff, those who are still in hospital are Case No 413 (48, female), who works in Dusk till Dawn; and another resident of Hang Shun Mansions, Case No 431 (39, male).
The infection appears more severe among the non-Filipino customers, however. Those who remain in hospital include three who were among the first to fall ill after visiting the bars around mid-March: No 192 (46, female); No 275 (30, male); 278 (28, male); and 284 (26, female).
Bar patrons who visited the blighted areas a week or so later also appear to have been stricken more severely. They include Case No 411, a 38-year-old male pilot; Case No 428, a 22-year-old policewoman; and Case No 458, 25-year-old female who works at Hyatt Hotel Kowloon.

After the bars, the biggest cluster is made up of newly arrived students from abroad, who number 42 as of this writing. Cluster cases were also recorded in the May Lun temple in North Point, the two karaokes in Causeway Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui, hotpot dinners in North Point and Kwun Tong, a wedding banquet in Discovery Bay, and a party venue in Aberdeen.

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