COVID-19: How to Deal with the Physical and Mental
Challenges Facing Hong Kong
The world has been scrambling to thwart the spread of a new coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China, and that has claimed thousands of lives and infected tens of thousands in the mainland. Hundreds have also been infected globally as the virus spread to multiple continents. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global health emergency in January.
For Hong Kong, the latest outbreak has brought back painful memories of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), which crippled the city in 2003, infecting more than 8,000 people globally and killing over 600 here and in mainland China. Concerns over the spread of the virus fueled panic buying that led to a shortage of face masks, toilet paper and hand wash, amplifying the anxiety many felt in a city that was already on edge following months of anti-government protests.
Is the spread of the virus showing signs of slowing? How long will it continue to affect Hong Kong? Our panel of experts will discuss the impact of the virus on Hong Kong and its citizens, the lessons to be learned from SARS, and coping mechanisms for the city’s residents.
KEIJI FUKUDA: Keiji Fukuda is the Director and a Clinical Professor at The University of Hong Kong School of Public Health. He previously worked at the World Health Organization (WHO) as Assistant Director-General (ADG) and Special Representative of the Director-General for antimicrobial resistance; ADG for the Health Security and Environment Cluster; and Director of the Global Influenza Programme. Professor Fukuda has been a global public health leader in emerging infectious diseases including seasonal, avian and pandemic influenza, SARS, MERS and Ebola.
DR. ARISINA MA: Dr. Arisina Ma is Chairperson of the Hong Kong Public Doctors’ Association, the representative body of all medical doctors working in the city’s Hospital Authority, Department of Health, and the medical faculties of the universities in Hong Kong.
ELIZABETH CHEUNG: Elizabeth Cheung has been a health reporter at the South China Morning Post since 2014 and has covered the coronavirus since the outbreak began. She also covers general medical news, breakthrough medical treatments and research, government policy and hospital blunders. Elizabeth has a master’s degree in development studies.
ODILE THIANG: Odile Thiang is Anti-Stigma Projects Coordinator at Mind Hong Kong, and Child and Adolescent Teaching Fellow at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She completed her Bachelor of Nursing as well as her Paediatric Nurse Practitioner – Master of Nursing degree at the University of Toronto. Her nursing background is in emergency medicine, paediatric mental health, and sexual assault and domestic violence.
Speaker: Keiji Fukuda, Dr. Arisina Ma, Elizabeth Cheung, Odile Thiang,