A highly anticipated announcement about a reduction in Hong Kong’s hotel quarantine period has been delayed, according to a report by the South China Morning Post. The announcement was supposed to be made at a press conference before an Executive Council meeting on Friday afternoon, but was cancelled due to “unresolved technical issues”, according to the article.
Officials from the Department of Health were also scheduled to meet designated quarantine hotel (DQH) operators, but this meeting was cancelled as well. According to media reports, the new quarantine measures were supposed to take effect next week, but there is now uncertainty over when they will be implemented.
Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu and Secretary for Health Lo Chung-mau have previously said that the government is considering reducing the hotel quarantine requirement from the current seven-day minimum to a week-long hotel-and-home isolation arrangement. Authorities are reportedly deciding between a “5+2” or a “4+3” combination, based on the results of the recently introduced Day 3 PCR test requirement for international arrivals.
The government was also supposed to introduce a two-colour health code for inbound travellers, confirmed local Covid-19 patients and their close contacts. The health code will be integrated with the vaccine pass system on the LeaveHomeSafe app.
Travellers are supposed get a yellow code once they begin their home isolation period, which will prevent them from going to high-risk areas such as pubs and restaurants. Patients who contract the virus in Hong Kong and who have been approved for home quarantine will get a red code, and their close contacts will be issued a yellow code.
Header image credits: Stefano Campolo via Flickr