On Saturday Hong Kong opened a temporary field hospital with 500 beds to house healthy Covid-19 patients as the city is fighting a new wave of virus infection. The financial hub was a poster child for dealing with the coronavirus, with all but ending local transmissions early in the summer. Yet the pathogen has returned since July, with some cases carried in by the tens of thousands of people who were exempted from a compulsory quarantine placed on most arrivals.
The hospital’s opening comes one day after city leader Carrie Lam declared that the upcoming legislative elections would be postponed for a year, saying the decision was solely to protect public health and had “nothing to do with politics”. Since the beginning of July, more than 2,000 new infections have been reported — 60% of the total since the virus first reached the city at the end of January.
On Saturday, the 11th day in a row above 100, the town reported 125 new cases, with overall infection numbers rising to 3,396. As of July, the death toll has risen from 7 to 31. China agreed to send workers of continental research to the city to conduct “large-scale nuclear acid research.” In a statement, the Chinese National Health Commission said it had set up a team of 60 clinical laboratory personnel and a “advance unit” will arrive in town on Sunday