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HK people will be asked to do 3 rapid tests from Apr 8, says CE

02 April 2022

By The SUN 

Top government officials join the packing of Covid bags that will be distributed starting today

Chief Executive Carrie Lam says all residents will be asked to test themselves voluntarily for three consecutive days from Friday next week, and report any positive results to the government.

CE Lam said this is the only way that Hong Kong’s actual Covid-19 situation could be known.

She made her statement at her Saturday press briefing, as officials began distributing Covid packs containing rapid test kits, high-grade face masks and Chinese medicines.


The government says the packs will be distributed to all 3.5 million households in the city within a week.

Mrs Lam said reporting positive test results would be on a voluntary basis, but she urged residents to do their part in getting the infection under control.

"We could only appeal to people's cooperation, riding out their aspirations to resume normal, daily living as soon as possible, and also to be able to travel," she said.

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People will be guided on how to do the tests properly, she added, and only those who test positive should report their results.

But at the same time, she said the plan to conduct universal mass testing using the gold standard PCR test has not been set aside.

She said carrying out the plan is necessary to achieve the government’s dynamic zero infection target. However, she said it is important to plan the timing and capacity when implementing mass virus testing.

CE Lam says the reporting of positive results from rapid tests is voluntary

She also said the large number of people who have been infected but did not inform the government about it pose a problem. Experts agree they should be exempted from any mass testing, but this could not be done if there is no proof of their recent infection.

"Given the likely large proportion of people in this sort of situation, we still have to listen to our experts in the government and outside of the government before we consider it a good enough timing to commence a compulsory universal testing in Hong Kong,” she said.

In the past week, more positive cases were confirmed from self-declared results from rapid tests than PCR tests. Given this, the government has decided that it is time to further promote rapid testing in a systematic way, said the CE.

She cited studies showing that when the surveillance of rapid test results was conducted in early March, the positivity rate was over 10%.


However, as of yesterday, Apr 1, the rate has fallen to 1.21%. This means that of Hong Kong’s total population of more than 7 million, between   80,000 to 90,000 people have been infected at this time. 

The CE said she was not worried about public abuse of the reporting system because a random study of the declared results on the government’s platform showed there had been only two cases of false reports being made.


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