HK logs five-digit Covid caseload again, confirms lowering age limit of vaccine pass to 5

Hong Kong on Thursday saw its daily Covid-19 caseload reach five-digit again since March, while authorities confirm they are now mulling arrangements on lowering the age limit of vaccine pass to five.

Among the latest 10,586 infections, 10,342 were locally transmitted, including 3,091 confirmed via PCR tests and 7,251 verified positive RAT results.

Chuang Shuk-kwan from the Centre for Health Protection also logged 244 imported cases – 73 identified at the airport, 81 in quarantine hotels and isolation facilities, and 85 in local communities.

On another note, Chuang today confirmed that the government is now preparing to lower the age threshold of the vaccine pass arrangement from 12 to five, and children will be required to receive two doses of Covid vaccine.

Chuang noted there will be a two-month grace period for parents to vaccinate their kids, and the government will announce relevant details next week.

Hospital Authority's chief manager for quality and standards Lau Ka-hin reported 11 deaths, involving five men and six women aged from 78 to 94. Seven were double-jabbed but had yet to receive the booster, and one was unvaccinated.

The death tally of the fifth wave now stands at 9,488.

Lau said three children are now in critical condition. A 17-month-old baby boy – found positive and developed severe illnesses after getting a Sinovac jab – suffers from encephalitis and needs tubing to maintain his breathing. Yet, his vitals are at steady levels.

The other two include a five-year-and-nine-month-old girl and a 15-month-old baby girl. The baby developed cramping thrice today and remained in ICU with stable vital signs, according to Lau.

The CHP was informed of 139 positive cases by 84 schools, including 113 students and 26 teachers and staffers. Over 550 teachers and students missed the first day of school today after testing positive.

Meanwhile, six elderly homes and a care center for the disabled were hit by Covid.

Public hospitals and treatment facilities are now housing 2,627 Covid patients. Among them, 48 are in critical condition, 58 are in serious condition, and 14 are in hospital intensive care. As of Thursday, 310 patients have recovered from Covid, and 280 have been discharged.