Hong Kong was a model of how to handle the novel coronavirus. But now it’s coming back.
In early March, Time magazine called the region “a lodestar for its ability to seemingly keep the disease at bay”, but the mistake of sending people back to work before the virus was truly dealt with was not far off.
In the first week of March, Hong Kong tried to return to a semblance of normality. Their cases have ticked up ever since.
The key to their initial successes was the aggressive response:
By Feb. 1, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore had all proactively implemented travel restrictions on passengers coming from the mainland, contravening the World Health Organization’s [WHO] insistence that travel bans were not necessary. The precautions came at a significant economic cost to these international hubs, which all rely on mainland China as their biggest trading partner and source of tourists.
The outright proscription of social gatherings paid huge dividends: