Hostels

Quarantine hotels to be turned into isolation facilities for Covid patients: sources

Quarantine hotels could be turned into community isolation facilities, offering up to 10,000 rooms in a very short time, sources said.

It has been understood that health authorities are considering turning 44 quarantine hotels into isolation facilities.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said she would meet with the hospitality industry tomorrow to discuss the plan.

Timothy Chui Ting-pong, executive director of the Hong Kong Tourism Association, said affected quarantine hotels are capable of coping with the change.

However, he stressed that the management of these hotels must take strict measures to maintain the highest standards of health and hygiene, ensuring adequate ventilation.

He added that hotel staff must also undergo basic training to handle daily tasks in such isolation facilities.

The city is now on the hunt for more quarantine facilities as the existing ones were filled to capacity with daily cases hitting an all-time high every day.

In a weekly press briefing, Lam told reporters that the government was considering requisitioning blocks 1 and 7 of the Queen’s Hill estate as well as the Heng King house of the Lai King estate for quarantine purposes.

The three residential blocks will provide up to 3,000 units, Lam said.

The chief executive said university hostels were also seen as one of the options over makeshift facilities.