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CHP investigates locally acquired SARS-CoV-2 virus cases with 1 276 cases tested positive by nucleic acid tests and 3 959 cases by RATs as well as 387 imported cases
     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) today (October 13) announced the latest epidemic situation of COVID-19. As of 0.00am, October 13, the CHP was investigating 5 235 additional locally acquired cases that tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, comprising 1 276 cases that tested positive by nucleic acid tests (611 confirmed cases, 565 asymptomatic cases and 100 cases with pending status) and 3 959 cases that tested positive by rapid antigen tests (RATs) in the past 24 hours.

     Separately, 387 additional imported cases were reported, including 352 cases that tested positive by nucleic acid tests (44 confirmed cases, 280 asymptomatic cases and 28 cases with pending status) and 35 cases that tested positive by RATs.

     Hong Kong has recorded a total of 968 281 and 853 473 cases that have tested positive by nucleic acid tests and RATs respectively for the SARS-CoV-2 virus so far.

     The CHP is continuing with epidemiological investigations of the cases. Please refer to the Annex and the "COVID-19 Thematic Website" (www.coronavirus.gov.hk) for more information.
     The CHP has been closely monitoring the situation of imported cases involving mutant strains by genetic analysis. 23 additional cases of sub-lineage XBB have been identified by the DH's Public Health Laboratory Services Branch (PHLSB) among imported cases in Hong Kong. As of 0.00am, October 13, Hong Kong recorded 29 cases of sub-lineage XBB and one case of BA.2.75.2 among imported cases.

     Among the specimens received by the DH's PHLSB during October 4 to 10 for verification testing of local cases, about 1.1 per cent and 94.0 per cent of them (seven-day moving average) are related to the sub-lineages BA.2.12.1 and BA.4/BA.5 (including suspected cases) of the Omicron mutant strain respectively.

     In addition, as of 0.00am, October 13, a total of 10 041 death cases that had tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus during the fifth wave (since December 31, 2021) were recorded, with 9 956 and 82 deaths reported from the Hospital Authority and public mortuaries respectively as well as three deaths reported from the Chinese University of Hong Kong Medical Centre. Hong Kong has so far recorded a total of 10 254 death cases that tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

     Furthermore, among the earlier cases by nucleic acid tests reported, there were cases (including pending cases) changed to confirmed, asymptomatic or re-positive cases. As at yesterday (October 12), the total number of confirmed cases was 421 677, while the figures for asymptomatic cases, re-positive cases and pending/unknown cases recorded since January 1 were 302 085, 31 and 242 860 respectively.

     The spokesman for the CHP said that COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective in preventing severe cases and deaths from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. They can provide effective protection to those vaccinated in preventing serious complications and even death after infection. People who have yet to receive vaccination, especially senior citizens, chronic patients, children, and other immunocompromised persons who face a higher chance of death after COVID-19 infection, should get vaccinated as early as possible for self-protection and to reduce the risk of falling seriously ill and death should they get infected.

     ​The CHP appeals to the community to keep on maintaining personal hygiene and comply with social distancing measures in order to jointly contain the risk of virus transmission. ​​The spokesman reminded members of the public that they can call various hotlines to make enquiries on COVID-19 (www.coronavirus.gov.hk/eng/index.html#hotline).
Ends/Thursday, October 13, 2022
Issued at HKT 17:10
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