Hong Kong detects case of new COVID-19 strain in passenger from Manila

Hong Kong’s health authorities said they detected a case of the new coronavirus strain initially found in Britain in a passenger who returned from Manila on December 22. Experts believe this COVID-19 variant to be considerably more contagious than the original strain.

Four cases of the new variant were detected in Hong Kong. Among them was a 30-year-old female Hong Kong resident, who returned from Manila on December 22.

The head of the communicable disease branch of the Hong Kong health department said the patient, tagged as Case 9003, arrived in Hong Kong via Philippine Airlines flight PR 300.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they are coordinating with the International Health Regulations focal point of Hong Kong for further details. They will also retrieve the flight manifest for the flight.

As of January 2, the health department reported there was no confirmed case yet of the new COVID-19 variant in the country.

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