Fil d’actualités Covid19-Migration-santé (veronique.petit@ird.fr) relié à CEPED-MIGRINTER-IC MIGRATIONS.

  • Coronavirus: Britain, US top exporters of Omicron to Hong Kong so far, with cases expected to surge over Christmas holidays | South China Morning Post

    Coronavirus: Britain, US top exporters of Omicron to Hong Kong so far, with cases expected to surge over Christmas holidays
    Published: 3:20pm, 21 Dec, 2021
    About a quarter of Hong Kong’s imported Covid-19 Omicron infections so far have been arrivals from Britain, the most from any country, with the United States next in line, a Post review of recent cases has found amid a near-daily detection rate of the highly transmissive variant over the past week.As Omicron continued its global spread, a medical expert on Tuesday warned that a surge of such infections over the next week was all but certain, with residents coming back to the city for the holidays.
    “As more residents return to Hong Kong from Britain and the United States, the city will see the number of imported infections increase substantially”, said Dr Ho Pak-leung, an infectious disease expert from the University of Hong Kong.He also criticised the government for waiting until Tuesday to add the United Kingdom to the new highest-risk category, just over a week after the country was found to be the source of two imported Omicron infections.“From the anti-pandemic perspective, it’s not ideal, and will increase the infection risks to Hong Kong,” he told a local radio programme.
    Hong Kong on Tuesday confirmed eight new Covid-19 cases, including seven that carried N501Y, a key mutation linked to Omicron. Those infections took the city’s overall tally to 12,541, with 213 related deaths.
    Separately, the government announced that all its employees would be required to present proof of Covid-19 vaccination when entering official buildings for work, taking effect in mid-February next year.Since the city’s first Omicron case was confirmed in late November, a total of 19 – all imported – have been recorded.
    Five returned to the city from Britain, accounting for 26.3 per cent of all cases. The United States came in second, with four cases, while the rest were spread mostly among African countries including South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya.Since December 12, almost every day has included an Omicron infection among the Covid-19 caseload. On Friday, four of the seven cases involved the new variant, the most yet in a single day.Ho on Tuesday warned the city to brace for a surge in such cases as residents flocked home for Christmas from countries where Omicron had already become the dominant version of Covid-19.Britain was added to Hong Kong’s highest coronavirus risk category on Tuesday, meaning arrivals from that country must now spend the first portion of their mandatory quarantine at the government’s Penny’s Bay facility.