China has sent a team of seven health officials to Hong Kong as the city reported a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases.
These seven health officials are the first members of a 60-person team that will conduct coronavirus testing.
However, some local councilors raised concerns that China may collect DNA samples for surveillance purposes. Hong Kong’s government has denied the concerns.
Chinese state media reported that health team members mostly belong to public hospitals in southern Guangdong Province. They will help to conduct testing in the region.
State media reported that the health team has been sent at the request of the Hong Kong government.
Hong Kong has currently 3,512 confirmed cases of coronavirus out of which 34 have died whereas 1,959 patients have recovered. The number of active cases is 1,519.
Earlier last week, parliamentary elections had been postponed in Hong Kong. The government had called it a necessary move amid an increase in cases. However, the opposition has accused the decision of using coronavirus to prevent people from voting.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam has warned that the hospital system could suffer “collapse” as it deals with a sharp increase in coronavirus cases.
Ms. Lam warned the city was on the “verge of a large-scale community outbreak, which may lead to a collapse of our hospital system and cost lives, especially of the elderly”.
She urged people to “follow strictly to social distancing measures and stay at home as far as possible”.