Hong Kong urges residents fretting over Covid measures not to panic
The government of Hong Kong stated that any Covid-19 lockdown will take into consideration the status of the financial center and provide basic necessities. It also advised anxious residents not to panic who were seen in supermarkets this week.
TVB broadcaster reported that health officials will report over 50,000 cases of new infection on Wednesday. This would set a new daily record. Since February 1, when about 100 infections were reported daily, the number of infected people has increased.
According to the government, it said that they were still working on a mandatory mass Covid-19 test scheme. Details would be announced once confirmed.
According to the statement, the government “would safeguard the Hong Kong status as a major financial hub” when it implemented the Compulsory Universal Testing scheme.
“The implementation of CUT initiatives in other regions of the globe has shown that citizens need to address basic human needs such as nutrition, medical care and shelter.
It is important that citizens do not panic or scramble to find the right supplies.
On Tuesday, March 1, 2022, residents waited in line outside of a pharmacy located in Hong Kong.
Paul Yeung | Bloomberg | Getty Images
This government statement was released on Tuesday night amid confusion and chaos. Many residents are frustrated by the inconsistent messaging and constant tweaking to coronavirus rules.
Leader Carrie Lam stated previously that compulsory testing was not an option and that the city would be locked down.
Sophia Chan, the Health Secretary, said Monday that a lockdown was not ruled out. This fuelled rumors and sparked a frenzy for grocery, pharmacy and banking products.
Hong Kong adheres to the “dynamic zero” policy of coronavirus control, as in mainland China. This is a strategy that seeks to eliminate all viruses through strict restrictions and quarantine.
However, the extremely infectious Omicron virus variant has broken through defenses multiple times. Some business leaders as well as medical professionals have begun to question the viability of a zero-Covid-19 strategy in light of rising cases.
As the number of deaths rises, hospitals and mortuaries operate at their maximum capacity.
Authorities race to create tens and thousands of isolation units for those suffering mild symptoms or none. It is further alarming to some residents who are accustomed to living with the virus, which relies on high levels vaccinations and mitigation measures, such as masks, to ward off their disease.
More than 238,000 coronavirus-infected people have died in the former British colony since 2020 when the pandemic started. More than 600 people have died in the week that has passed, and the vast majority of them were unvaccinated.
Experts at the University of Hong Kong stated that there had been an estimated 1.7 million cases of the disease as of Monday. A peak of approximately 183,000 daily infection is expected to occur in the following week.
Allan Zeman, an eminent businessman, stated in a letter that Hong Kong’s reputation was “very damaged”, and that confusing messages from its government had caused “widespread panic.”
Zeman wrote to Lam, saying that there were too many rumors and he felt a sense of unease. In a letter to Lam, Zeman stated that he worried about the future of Hong Kong under Chinese rule. He expressed concerns over Hong Kong’s status as an international capital with “one nation, two systems.”
He wrote, “China requires an international Hong Kong” and not just another 7-million population city.
We need clear messages that give people direction and hope to end this horror.
Zeman acknowledged that the letter was authentic and had not been circulated, however he confirmed it to Reuters.
There are concerns about plans for mass testing. Many people may be made to live in isolation and family members who test positive will have to be divorced.
A travel advisory was issued Wednesday by the U.S. Embassy General for Hong Kong, Macau. It urged people to avoid Hong Kong due Covid-19 and associated restrictions “including the danger of parents or children being separated”.
You can also do it separately HSBCIn an email to staff, Reuters revealed that employees must possess a valid vaccination pass before March 28 in order to be allowed into the premises. A spokesperson from HSBC confirmed the content of the memo.