Hong Kong’s Covid infections exceed 1 million amid outbreak

Hong Kong’s cumulative coronavirus infections have surpassed 1 million as the city grapples with a widespread outbreak that has killed more people than reported Covid-19 deaths across mainland China.

Health officials on Friday reported 20,079 confirmed infections, raising the total since the start of the pandemic to 1,016,944.

About 97% of them came from the current wave in Hong Kong, which started in December. Since February 9, about 5,200 people have died due to this virus.

The total number of deaths in Hong Kong has surpassed the 4,636 fatalities recorded in mainland China by 5,401.

Mainland authorities have reported 126,234 confirmed cases, but unlike most countries, China does not include asymptomatic cases in its total confirmed cases.

The city of 7.4 million is in the grip of an omicron boom that has battered its health care system as hospitals reach maximum capacity.

Coffins are running out and morgues are so full that bodies have to be temporarily placed in refrigerated containers.

Most of those who died were elderly patients, most of whom were not fully vaccinated.

For most of the pandemic, Hong Kong was able to stamp out earlier outbreaks with tough zero COVID restrictions, which temporarily closed businesses, limited public gatherings, and long quarantines for arrival and flight restrictions from high-risk countries. Like entry restrictions.

This changed with the highly permeable Omicron version.

Officials have sought aid from mainland China, which has sent experts and medical resources to help Hong Kong cope with the pandemic.