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False positive case allows some party guests to leave quarantine

08 January 2022

By The SUN 

About 100 guests at the controversial party will still have to spend 21 days at Penny's Bay

One of the guests at a birthday party hosted by a mainland legislator on Jan 3 has turned out to have tested false positive, so about a dozen people who were moved to Penny’s Bay Quarantine Centre after being identified as her close contacts would be allowed to leave.

However, about 100 other guests including top government officials and legislators will still have to remain at the quarantine facility as they were deemed to be close contacts of another female attendee who came in at about 9:30pm.


The false positive guest, identified in media reports as RTHK host Joyce Yeung, was at Witman Hung’s birthday party at Reserva Iberica restaurant in Wanchai only between 6pm and 8pm, so all those who were there with her and left before 9:30 were spared the quarantine order.

Among the prominent guests who were immediately moved to Penny’s Bay were Home Affairs Secretary Caspar Tsui, Immigration Director Au Ka-wing and Political Assistant to the Development Secretary Allen Fung.

Pindutin para sa detalye

Angered by the revelation that her top officials had joined a large gathering amid the worsening spread of the Omicron variant, Chief Executive Carrie Lam ordered a thorough investigation of the incident.

On Friday night, after learning of Yeung’s possible infection, she also issued a statement ordering the temporary suspension of the quarantined officials and making them use their vacation leave during their 21-day isolation.


However, the Centre for Health Protection said in a statement Saturday night that further tests by the Department of Health’s public laboratory showed the sample taken from the preliminary positive case was possibly contaminated by vaccine strain.

The sample did not carry the N501Y, L452R, E484K or T478K mutant strains of the coronavirus but carried the D614D strain which is compatible with a vaccine strain, said the CHP statement.


After being taken to hospital, Yeung tested negative twice and did not develop any symptoms. Her lungs were also clear.

Learning about her negative test results, CHP experts made an on-site inspection of the doctor’s clinic. There they learned that the doctor administered Covid-19 vaccine injection for 13 clients on Jan 6, resulting in a possible environmental contamination.


But one of the experts told reporters the doctor did nothing wrong, as he had washed his hands before and after vaccinating his patients, and his clinic was clean and well-maintained.

However, microbiologist Yuen Kwok-yung suggested doctors clean their clinics with diluted bleach each time they administer a vaccine to reduce the chance of contamination.

“Initial result revealed that the positive test results of the sample were not caused by infection. Hence, the relevant case will not be classified as SARS-CoV-2 virus infection” said the statement.

All her close contacts who had been moved to a quarantine center would be released.

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