15th September 2021 – (Hong Kong) The Government exercises the power under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Compulsory Testing for Certain Persons) Regulation (Cap. 599J) and publishes in the Gazette a compulsory testing notice, which requires any person who had been present at 11 specified premises during the specified period (persons subject to compulsory testing) to undergo a COVID-19 nucleic acid test.
In relation to a previous imported case with the L452R mutant strain, any person who had been present at five specified premises during the specified period has to undergo additional testing. For prudence’s sake, the above compulsory testing requirement applies to those who have completed a COVID-19 vaccination course as well.
Furthermore, since there were outbreaks of upper respiratory tract infection and/or influenza-like illness in six schools, and the symptoms of the diseases concerned are similar to those of COVID-19, for prudence’s sake, six schools are also covered in the compulsory testing notice. Persons who have completed a COVID-19 vaccination course would be taken to have complied with the requirements set out in the compulsory testing notice.
Persons subject to compulsory testing in accordance with a compulsory testing notice must go to any of the mobile specimen collection stations, community testing centres (CTCs) or recognised local medical testing institutions to undergo professional swab sampling in fulfilling the requirements for compulsory testing. Young children may continue to undergo the test using a stool specimen.
If Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No. 3 or above is hoisted or the Red or Black Rainstorm Warning Signal or the post-super typhoon “extreme conditions” announcement by the Government is in force at any time during the period for undergoing the compulsory testing, the period for undergoing the compulsory testing will be extended for one day.
The Comirnaty and CoronaVac vaccines are highly effective in preventing severe cases and deaths from COVID-19. They can provide protection to those vaccinated to prevent serious complications and even death after infection. The Government appeals to persons who are not yet vaccinated, especially senior citizens, chronic patients and other immunocompromised persons who face a higher chance of death after COVID-19 infection, to get vaccinated as soon as possible for better self-protection before the fifth wave strikes in Hong Kong.
Details of the compulsory testing notice are in Annex 1.