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Covid-19 Test
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So, you’ve tested positive. Now what?

Your guide to self-testing in Hong Kong

Tatum Ancheta
Dara Chau
Edited by
Tatum Ancheta
Written by
Dara Chau
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The risk of catching Covid-19 is more real than ever as seen in Hong Kong since the pandemic began. Be informed about what to do if in the case we do test positive. 

The city has flocked to rapid antigen test (RAT) kits like how surgical masks, toilet rolls, and vegetables were once the cause of quite the frenzy. You can still take RT-PCR tests at the Community Testing Centres but the government is also accepting home kit test results. So, how do you go about testing and reporting your case? Read below for the full information. 

RECOMMENDED: Stay up to date with the city's latest pandemic regulations

Who should get tested? 
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Who should get tested? 

If experiencing any Covid-19 symptoms (mild or severe fever, cough or sore throat), are advised to test through RAT or CHP at the earliest convenience. Other individuals subject to compulsory testing include household members and close contacts of confirmed cases, residents of buildings with mutant strains, persons who have visited specified premises and high-risk groups or high exposure groups. 

How do I get tested? 
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How do I get tested? 

Getting tested at community testing centres and hospitals is proving near impossible with healthcare workers backed by so many requests flooding in. The Hong Kong government has advised people who require testing to administer the RAT at home, request for voluntary testing at self-paid general private practices or arrange for private laboratory testing. There are also specimen collection packs available at specific distribution points. The Hospital Authority has made tests available to distribute and collect at general out-patient clinics, post offices, and vending machines at MTR stations across several locations in Hong Kong. 

Those undergoing the Covid-19 nucleic acid test will be notified via SMS within days after submitting the specimen. If the result is positive, they will also receive an electronic form to submit and log the case. 

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Tested positive? Now what? 
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Tested positive? Now what? 

Those who test positive no longer need to wait for testing and government confirmation via community testing centres and hospitals, instead they can report their personal information, including name, birth dates, ID numbers, and close contact details by calling the "StayHomeSafe" scheme hotline 1833 019 or by submitting test results via the government's reporting platform.

These self-reported cases will be treated as confirmed cases. Healthcare officials will instruct individuals to isolate (i.e. daily disinfection, use of surgical masks), provide them with relevant information on self-confinement, and deliver test kits and an electronic wristband to their residences. 

Those who have already received two vaccinations are required to be isolated for six to seven days since contracting the virus. If the RAT test comes out negative on these days, you will be free to resume normal daily life. If the test continues to be positive, remain in quarantine until producing a negative test. Those who have not yet received any vaccination will need to hold out until day 14. 

Confirmed cases needing medical attention and cannot stay home during the quarantine will be designated to a clinic, hospital, or isolation centre. While pending admission, the resident should remain at home and observe personal and household hygiene. To get to and from these venues, there are designated Covid-19 taxis available for pre-booking to transport patients. If suffering from severe symptoms (shortness of breath, pain in chest or abdomen, severe muscle pain, dizziness, confusion, seizures, not urinating), call for an ambulance to be admitted to the hospital for treatment.

What’s the latest on vaccinations? 
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What’s the latest on vaccinations? 

Currently, 89.3 percent of the Hong Kong population has already received their first dose of vaccine. The government continues to urge the public to receive a second or third dose if they have not already done so. Those who have been jabbed with Sinovac are also strongly recommended to take a BioNTech booster to increase immunity and antibody levels. The third dose should be taken three months (instead of the original six months) following the second dose.  

Children aged 12 to 17 are advised to also receive their third shot, while children below 12 are not advised to at this time. Pregnant women are at risk of developing complications after catching Covid, but vaccines can reduce the effect, and the government has also recommended for them to receive the vaccine. 

In order to curb the spread of Covid and safeguard the health and wellbeing of the public, it is best to lay low and stay home until the number of cases declines. And while the lack of social interactions is rather grim, here are some ways to stay entertained online and occupied as we ride out the fifth wave. 

For more information on the latest news on Covid-19, here are some important numbers and websites to note down:

Coronavirus Government Website: coronavirus.gov.hk/eng/index.html

Centre for Health Protection Hotline: 2125 1111 / 2125 1122 (9 am to 8 pm)

Home Affairs Department Hotline: 2835 1473 (9 am to 6 pm, Monday to Friday except for public holidays)

Compulsory Testing Hotline: 6275 6901 (9 am to 6 pm)

HKSAR Government COVID-19 WhatsApp Helpline: WhatsApp 9617 1823

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