Govt urged to recognise self-test positive cases

The DAB has urged health authorities to classify people who test positive for Covid-19 with rapid test kits as confirmed patients, so prompt support can be offered.

Speaking at a virtual press conference on Tuesday, lawmakers from the party said daily infection figures provided by authorities are seriously lagging behind and are an underestimation of Hong Kong’s actual epidemic situation.

This is because people who self-test at home have been unable to get the specimen bottles needed for confirmation tests, they said.

Even if people manage to give their specimens at testing centres in the community, results also take days to come back, the lawmakers noted.

They said before these people are officially confirmed to be infected, many of them have no choice but to head out to buy daily necessities or go to work, allowing the virus to spread further.

“What’s happening here is for the people who got the RAT (rapid antigen test) kits, even if they test positive, there is no support from the government,” Holden Chow said.

“The government should recognise the result tested by these RAT kits. Once a person who got the RAT test kit and they test positive, the government should organise a mechanism for these people to convey their results to the government, to recognise these positive results, so that the government can deliver other quick support to these people,” he said.

The party added that many people have been unable to go to work for days because of the long wait for Covid test results from the authorities.

The lawmakers urged the government to deploy temporary “fire eye” labs properly so the wait for test results can be shortened.

The DAB also said more people, including civil servants, should be deployed to man support hotlines for Covid patients.