Hong Kong says traveler from PHL had UK COVID-19 variant

(Eagle News) — A passenger from the Philippines has tested positive for the COVID-19 variant first observed in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong said.

According to Dr. Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the Communicable Disease Branch of Hong Kong’s Center for Health Protection, the 30-year-old female arrived in Hong Kong from Manila on December 22.

She took a Philippine Airlines flight, PR 300.

Health Undersecretary Rosario Vergeire said the DOH has requested details from the Hong Kong government.

“Also retrieving the flight manifest for the identified flight. We will be informing as soon as we get complete information,” she said.

The DOH has said that as of January 2, the Philippine Genome Center had not detected the UK variant in the country.

“Rest assured that the DOH is working with relevant agencies to ensure that stricter measures of control are being implemented in all ports of entry,” the DOH said.

The Philippines has also imposed a temporary ban on foreign travelers from 21 countries where there have been reports of the UK variant, said to be up to 70 percent more infectious.

The ban, which is in effect until January 15, covers the following countries:

  1. Denmark
  2. Ireland
  3. Japan
  4. Australia
  5. Israel
  6. The Netherlands
  7. Hong Kong
  8. Switzerland
  9. France
  10. Germany
  11. Iceland
  12. Italy
  13. Lebanon
  14. Singapore
  15. Sweden
  16. South Korea
  17. South Africa
  18. Canada
  19. Spain
  20. United Kingdom
  21. United States