會長通訊:新型冠狀病毒肺炎III | President's Message:WARS (III) 

HKDU⠀ Published at 2020-04-15

新型冠狀病毒肺炎III

 

楊超發會長

 

 

我於2020 年3月22日撰寫此會長通訊時,我同時在收聽著一位香港微生物學家在電台上發表有關許多香港市民從外地返港時傳播2019冠狀病毒病的危險的講話。我們是否真的處於戰爭狀態–第三次世界大戰,無形的敵人潛伏在我們的手,鼻子和嘴巴,通過與周圍的人的密切接觸而造成傷害和伏擊我們的身體?是的,我們確實處於戰爭狀態。我們確實生活在一個一生中從未見過的狀態。

那麼,除了基本服務,如醫療,食品和銀行設施外,是否應迫使所有商業活動關閉以保持社交距離,直到戰爭狀態消失了?我同意。當我們還沒有新的2019冠狀病毒病的任何針對性治療或預防措施時現在的確是生死攸關的時候。每個人都是一個士兵保衛自己,保衛香港。

儘管如此,在我們向局長陳肇始教授提交了一封與立法會議員陳沛然醫生、香港私人執業專科醫生協會會長郭寶賢醫生及香港牙醫學會會長曾憲紀醫生就私營醫生的嚴重業務損失的問題共同簽署的信件之後(會議照片及信件內容請參閱本月刊第11及12頁),已經與局長會面。於2020 年3月4日於政府總部舉行的會議上,我與局長談到,私營診所的平均業務損失起碼7成至9成,平均為8成。在這個關鍵時期,私家醫生在與政府一起抗擊2019冠狀病毒病方面一直做得很好。 私家醫生缺乏個人防護裝備,但局長回答說政府此刻亦無能為力。她說,我們應該期待新開將的本地口罩生產工廠的額外供應,而新的口罩來源應會於2020 年4月開始發售。我要求政府通過新成立的防疫抗疫基金,為每間私營診所提供十萬港元的資助,以協助這些私營診所。經過接近一小時的會議討論,我們達成共識,即政府應在第二輪抗疫基金中接受我們的要求。我們即將看看政府是否可以在這兩個月內完成。

在會議期間,局長進一步談到了為應對2019冠狀病毒病疫情的加強化驗室監察計劃,她亦要求私家醫生的配合。我們立即提醒政府,此監察計劃可能會給某些私營診所帶來污名化,擔心若相關醫生的患者在2019 冠狀病毒病的即時聚合酶連鎖反應檢測中呈陽性,那些醫生將會被隔離。然而,當該計劃於2020年3月10日推出時,我們注意到了一些後勤問題,這可能會增加社區交叉感染的機會。於2020 年3月10日之後,我不得不在媒體上多次發表,以至最終政府改變了收集樣本的方式。首先,私家醫生絕不需要尋求私人實驗室的幫助來收集患者的樣本以進行測試。第二,有一系列的政府門診診所可供
患者(或其家人及朋友)呈交樣本(深喉唾液或痰)進行2019冠狀病毒病的即時聚合酶連鎖反應檢測,以減少發生交叉感染的機會。我了解到,如果與確診患者的接觸時間少於15分鐘,而診所工作人員在諮詢期間穿戴了足夠適當的個人防護裝備,診所的工作人員可能不必隔離。因此,請各會員盡可能遵循此規則,以最大程度地減低患者感染自己的機會。到目前為止,我已經提交了30多個樣本用於2019冠狀病毒病的即時聚合酶連鎖反應檢測,幸運的是沒有人是呈陽性的。

幾乎在同一時間,我們代表一些領展物業的診所醫生提交了一封信給領展物業管理,要求領展可在這艱難時刻對診所作出減租安排。該信件於本月刊的第9頁,以供各位參考。我希望其他業主,如港鐵等也能聽我們的聲音。如果閣下對業主有類似的要求,歡迎提交到秘書處,以便我們可以更強烈地提出減租的要求。 如果我們可以團結一致,結果相信會更好。

我在上一期的會長通訊中提及,我的第一個男孫已於2020年2月於美國出生。我已於2020年2月19日返回香港。而我的妻子則於美國待了一段較長時間。她今天必須番回香港,亦必須接受檢疫。這讓我有點緊張。但是在大家的支持下,我認為我們的家人可以在未來的14或21天內承受這個巨大的挑戰。

感謝各位!

 

楊超發醫生

 


 

WARS (III) 

 

While writing this message on 22nd March 2020, at the same time I was listening to a Hong Kong microbiologist speaking on the Radio about the imminent danger of many of the Hong Kong citizens spreading the COVID-19 on returning from outside. Are we really in the war time state – World War III - with invisible enemies lurking in our hands, noses and mouths, awaiting ambushes to hurt and kill through close contact with people around us? Yes, we are indeed in the war state. We are indeed living in a condition that we have never met before in a life time.

Then should all commercial activities, except essential services like health, food and banking facilities, be forced to close down for social distancing until the war state is gone? I agree. It is now indeed a matter of life or death when we do not have any curative or preventive measure for this new COVID-19 virus. Everybody should be a soldier to defend oneself and to guard Hong Kong.

Nonetheless, we have met with the Secretary for Food and Health on the issue of severe business loss of the private doctors, after we have issued a co-signed letter to Prof. Sophia Chan (Please refer to page 11 of this Bulletin for the photo of the meeting and page 12 of this Bulletin for the letter) with Dr. the Honorable Pierre Chan, Dr. Samuel Kwok of Hong Kong Association of Private Specialists and Dr. Century Tsang of the Hong Kong Dental Association. During the meeting on 4th March 2020 in the Government Headquarters, I told the Secretary that the average loss of business in private clinics was from 70 to 90% with an average of 80%. Private doctors had been doing their job well in this critical period in fighting together with the Government against the COVID-19 virus. The private doctors were short of PPE but the Secretary replied that at this moment the Government could not help. She said we should be looking forward to additional supplies from newly established local mask production factories. She said the new sources of masks should be available in April 2020. I asked the Government to assist the private clinics by implementing relief fund in the amount of HK$ 100,000 for each private clinic through the newly established Anti-Epidemic Fund set up by the Government. After nearly 1 hour of meeting, we had the consensus that the Government should entertain our request in the second round of Anti-Epidemic Fund. We shall see if that can be accomplished in a month or two.

During the meeting, the Secretary further touched on the Enhanced Laboratory Surveillance programme of testing of COVID-19 and she requested the cooperation from private doctors. We immediately warned the Government on the potential stigmatization of certain private clinics by this test and the worries of some doctors for being quarantined if their patients are proved positive in the PCR test for COVID-19 virus. However, when the programme rolled out on 10th March 2020, we noticed some logistic problems which might increase the chance of cross infection in the community. I was obliged to voice out loudly in the media on several occasions after 10th March 2020 so much so that in the end there was a change in the specimen collection logistics by the Government. Firstly, there is no absolute need for private doctors to seek the help from private laboratories to collect the patients’ specimens for the test. Secondly, there is a list of Government outpatient clinics available for our patients (or their family members or friends) to hand in the specimens (either deep throat saliva or sputum) for COVID-19 PCR test so as to cut down the chance of cross infection. I was given to understand that if the contact time with a confirmed patient is less than 15 minutes, and the clinic staff have worn adequate and appropriate PPE during that period of consultation, the staff in the clinic may not have to be quarantined. So please follow this rule as much as possible to minimize the chance of getting yourself infected by your patients. Hitherto I have sent out more than 30 specimens for COVID-19 tests by now, and luckily no one is positive.

Nearly at the same time, we had sent a request letter, on behalf of some public estate doctors working under Link, to the Link management asking for rental reduction with the similar reason of severe drop of business in this critical period. The letter is reproduced on Page 9 of this bulletin for members’ reference. I hope the Link management can listen to us. I hope other landlords like MTR etc can listen to our voice too. If you have similar requests to landlord, please submit to the secretariat so that we can request for rental reduction with a stronger voice. The outcome may be better if we can fight together with unity.

I have told you in my last message that my first grandson was born in the United States of America in February 2020. I returned to Hong Kong on 19th February 2020. However, my wife has to stay behind a bit longer. She has to fly back to Hong Kong today and certainly has to undergo quarantine. This makes me a bit nervous. But with the support from all our friends here, I think our family can stand up to such a great challenge in the coming 14 or 21 days.

Many thanks,

Dr. Yeung Chiu Fat Henry