19th October 2020 – (Hong Kong) Specimens from 1,267 persons were collected for COVID-19 nucleic acid tests yesterday at the Yau Tsim Mong Temporary Testing Centre located at Henry G Leong Yaumatei Community Centre set up by the Government. The centre ceased operation at 8pm. Specimens from a cumulative total of 16,802 persons had been collected from the four temporary testing centres set up by the Government, including the three centres which ceased operation earlier.
As at 10pm yesterday, a total of 15,535 specimens collected under the temporary community testing arrangement had been tested. If any specimen tested shows a positive COVID-19 result, the specimen will be referred to the Public Health Laboratory Services Branch of the Department of Health (DH) for a confirmatory test. Confirmed cases will be followed up and announced by the Centre for Health Protection of the DH.
In view of signs of deterioration of the COVID-19 epidemic situation in Hong Kong in early October, the Government had decided to set up one temporary testing centre in each of the four districts, namely Wan Chai, Kwai Tsing, Kowloon City and Yau Tsim Mong Districts, which were related to recent community outbreak clusters, to provide free specimen collection and testing services to facilitate testing of members of the public, in order to identify cases and asymptomatic patients as early as possible so as to cut the transmission chains in the community.
While the temporary testing centres have ceased operation, members of the public can still receive free COVID-19 tests by collecting deep throat saliva specimen collection packs at the 46 general outpatient clinics of the Hospital Authority. Distribution time of the specimen collection packs has been extended to 9am to 1pm and 2pm to 5pm from Monday to Friday.
A Government spokesman appealed to all members of the public who have doubts about their health condition to undergo testing to protect oneself and others and to fight the virus together.
Meanwhile, in response to media enquiries about registration arrangements for members of the public at the Yau Tsim Mong Temporary Testing Centre, a Government spokesman yesterday gave the following reply:
“To facilitate testing by members of the public, they could visit the temporary testing centre directly for on-site registration without the need for making prior online appointment. An SMS message will be sent to a person’s registered mobile number when his or her test result is available.
“If any member of the public could not provide mobile phone numbers, the staff on site would offer assistance in a bid to facilitate him or her to receive the test. Several persons who were unable to provide their mobile phone numbers today had successfully got the tests done under the assistance of the staff. We will review the relevant procedures and guidelines so that the arrangements could be further improved for any similar exercises in the future.
“After the temporary testing centre ceased operation, members of the public may still obtain the deep throat saliva specimen collection packs at the 46 general outpatient clinics of the Hospital Authority for free COVID-19 tests.”