HONG KONG, May 4 (Xinhua) -- The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government on Wednesday appealed to elderly people again to undergo frequent COVID-19 testing in light of the gradual relaxation of social distancing measures and the increase in social activities.
The government has started distributing free rapid antigen test (RAT) kits to the elderly aged 60 and above since April 19 so as to encourage them to undergo voluntary RAT testing from time to time. As of May 2, close to 2 million RAT kits were distributed by the government through relevant channels.
A spokesperson for the Food and Health Bureau (FHB) of the HKSAR government said that elderly people have higher COVID-19 infection risks. Making good use of RAT kits to conduct regular testing enables early identification of infection, so that appropriate treatment can be provided in a timely manner, thereby preventing the development of serious illness or even death.
The FHB suggested that elderly people who have received at least two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine undergo a RAT at least once per week, and those who are not fully vaccinated should conduct a RAT at least three times per week.
The HKSAR government said it will continue to distribute RAT kits through various elderly service units until the end of May.
On Wednesday, Hong Kong registered 112 new COVID-19 cases by nucleic acid tests, and 201 additional cases through self-reported RATs, official data showed. ■