Gym staff ordered to get tested

(To watch the full press briefing with sign language interpretation, click here.)   The Centre for Health Protection today said due to a number of COVID-19 cases detected in fitness centres, all gym staff in Hong Kong will be required to have a virus test by March 14.   The centre's Communicable Disease Branch Head Dr Chuang Shuk-kwan told reporters at a press briefing this afternoon that it is investigating 60 additional COVID-19 cases, of which 54 are locally transmitted.   Among the local cases, 47 are linked to URSUS Fitness in Sai Ying Pun.   Dr Chuang said: “Because the gym is located on Hong Kong Island, many of those infected by the COVID-19 gym cluster work in Central and other Hong Kong Island districts. The cluster involves various occupations, such as banking, finance and lawyers.”   She appealed to the infected people and their close contacts to help with the contact tracing work.   “Contact tracing is challenging because there are a lot of cases popping up in the past one or two days. Those infected may have already went to various places during their social activities - many of them also went to restaurants, or sometimes bars to drink with their friends and gather at home. So it is difficult for them to recall all their activities.   “We need the compliance and the co-operation of all the people infected as well as their close contacts."   Dr Chuang also noted that infections have been found among those who had not been to the gym.   “We have already observed a small number of second-generation transmission among those who had not been to the gym - the close contacts of the cases. It is likely that we may also observe third-generation transmission, even after putting the close contacts into the quarantine camps.   “So I think compulsory testing may help to find out if there are other asymptomatic infections among the other staff in the gyms.”   The centre also reported that there are five local cases with unknown sources of infection.   For information and health advice on COVID-19, visit the Government's dedicated webpage.
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