HKSAR gov't keeps tracing COVID-19 through sewage surveillance
The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government said Saturday that it will distribute around 210,000 sets of COVID-19 rapid antigen test (RAT) kits as part of a follow-up on the recent detection of the COVID-19 virus in sewage samples.
The test kits will be distributed to residents, cleaning workers and property management staff working in the areas with positive sewage testing results showing relatively high viral loads in order to help identify infected persons.
The HKSAR government also urged RAT kit users to report any positive results for COVID-19 via the government's online platform.
On Saturday, Hong Kong registered 4,034 confirmed locally transmitted cases of COVID-19 and 231 imported cases.
Meanwhile, since the start of a mass inoculation program in February last year, over 6.76 million people, or 92.9 percent of the eligible population in Hong Kong, have taken at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccines, while over 6.5 million, or 89.3 percent of the eligible population, have taken two doses.
As of Saturday, 66.4 percent of the eligible people in Hong Kong have taken their booster doses, while a total of 191,554 people have taken the fourth dose, official data showed.
A spokesperson for the Center for Health Protection (CHP) stressed that as the local situation of COVID-19 infection is still severe, the CHP strongly appealed to the community to continue to comply with social distancing measures, avoid going out, and refrain from participating in unnecessary or crowded activities or gatherings.
The spokesperson said that COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective in preventing severe cases and deaths, urging people who have yet to take vaccines, especially senior citizens, chronic patients, and immunocompromised persons who face a higher chance of death after COVID-19 infection to get vaccinated as early as possible.