Hong Kong families despair over COVID-19 rules separation from children

The Hong Kong authorities enforce their dynamic zero COVID policy, anyone who tests positive, including infants and children, are put into isolation facilities with no family contact allowed.

Guada, a mother of two young children and pregnant with twins, cries herself to sleep at night, worried that Hong Kong’s severe COVID-19 rules will separate her from her kids or force her to give birth alone.

“Imagine the stress I’m having right now, scared of having to give birth alone, scared of them taking my daughters away, taking my babies away, scared that if I’m positive, they are going to take me away,” said Guada.

As coronavirus cases hit record daily highs, the government plans to roll out compulsory mass testing for the city’s 7.

4 million people in March, exacerbating separation fears among many local and expatriate families.

Parents’ worries have been heightened after authorities made an infected 11-month-old isolate by herself in hospital.

In the past two weeks, authorities have reported the deaths of several children who were infected with coronavirus, the youngest another 11-month-old.

Authorities have said they are overwhelmed and cannot accommodate parents staying with infected infants as hospitals operate at maximum or over capacity with close to 10,000 new daily infections from nearly zero at the start of the year.

“Parents can arrange video calls three times a day to stay in contact with their young ones,” health authorities said.

“For me, it’s very inhumane.

I’m very afraid.

I have a daughter aged 14 months, she doesn’t speak, she doesn’t know how our phone works,” said a university lecturer.

Medical clinic Central Health said, “Isolating infants presented a significant risk of child fatalities as parents may delay taking their children to hospital during critical periods when intervention could save lives.


READ ALSO: COVID-19: Hong Kong identifies 20,000 hotel rooms for quarantine
Reuters
 
Hong Kong families despair over COVID-19 rules separation from children

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