Tsuen Wan family gets third COVID-19 diagnosis

The man and his wife (Case 1049) are residents of Block 5 on Lei Muk Shue Estate in Tsuen Wan. Screenshot: Google Street View
The man and his wife (Case 1049) are residents of Block 5 on Lei Muk Shue Estate in Tsuen Wan. Screenshot: Google Street View

A Hong Kong grandfather is now the third member of his family to test positive for COVID-19, just days after his wife and granddaughter were confirmed to be the city’s first local cases of coronavirus in weeks.

During today’s coronavirus briefing, the Center for Health Protection confirmed that a 62-year-old man had tested positive for COVID-19. Case 1052, whose wife (Case 1049) tested positive for the virus on Tuesday, was the only person out of his wife’s eight close contacts to show no symptoms. Following his wife’s diagnosis, the man submitted a deep throat saliva sample and was sent to a quarantine center.

His sample reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday evening — just hours after the CHP confirmed that his granddaughter (Case 1050) also had the virus.

Case 1049, a 66-year-old woman, made headlines on Monday night after she was reported to be Hong Kong’s first local case of COVID-19 in 23 days — just five days shy of the period that health officials said would indicate that the local transmission chain had been broken. She is a housewife, while her husband works as a watch repairman on Market Street in Tsuen Wan.

Six other members of the family have tested negative for COVID-19 despite showing mild symptoms. They will remain in quarantine for two weeks.

According to the CHP, Case 1049’s movements were largely limited to her home, her son’s home, and the local market where she bought groceries. A total of 860 households, spread across Case 1049’s apartment block on Lei Muk Shue Estate and her son’s apartment building on Market Street, will be tested for the virus. Workers at the market stalls that the patient frequented will also be tested, as will the students and teachers at a tutoring center that Case 1050 attended.

During yesterday’s briefing, Undersecretary of Food and Health Chui Tak-yi called the fight against COVID-19 a “long war” with “a lot of developments”. He said it was “impossible to completely rule out” the risk of local cases resurging in Hong Kong, citing recent clusters in Seoul and Jilin as an example, and urged people “not to let their guards down” in regards to social distancing and hygiene.

Chiu also said that the government’s more relaxed social distancing measures would stay in place for the time being, though he noted that restrictions will continue to be reviewed depending on any new developments.

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