News Alerts

26 Feb 2020 | 02:03 PM UTC

Hong Kong: Authorities bar non-resident arrivals from South Korea to contain COVID-19 spread February 25 /update 11

Hong Kong, SAR China News Alert

Authorities announce that non-resident arrivals from South Korea will be prohibited entry into the territory to contain spread of COVID-19 effective February 25; follow authority directives

TIMEFRAME expected from 2/26/2020, 12:00 AM until 3/31/2020, 11:59 PM (Asia/Hong_Kong). COUNTRY/REGION Hong Kong

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Event

On Tuesday, February 25, authorities in Hong Kong announced that non-resident arrivals from South Korea will be prohibited entry into the territory. In addition, Hong Kong residents who had been in South Korea up to 14 days before arriving in Hong Kong would have to undergo 14 days of medical surveillance to help contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Additionally, non-residents who have been in South Korea 14 days prior to their arrival in Hong Kong will be prohibited entry.

Authorities have also announced that schools will remain closed until Monday, April 20, at the earliest.

As of Tuesday, February 25, Hong Kong has reported 85 cases of COVID-19 and two related deaths. Further spread of COVID-19 is expected in the coming days and weeks.

Context

The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.

Cases of the virus have been confirmed in more than 30 countries and territories worldwide. Virus screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On February 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared that the COVID-19 outbreak is a "very grave threat."

Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and labored breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.

Advice

To reduce the general risk of transmission, travelers are advised to abide the following measures:

  • Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water
  • When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue - throw tissue away immediately and wash hands
  • If you have fever, cough, and difficulty breathing seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider
  • Adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments

In the case that symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness emerge either during or after travel, individuals are encouraged to seek medical attention and share their travel history with their health care provider. Travelers returning from China who develop symptoms of pneumonia are advised to call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to avoid potential spread of the disease.

 

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