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40th Anniversary Celebration
About HKCFP > President’s Message

July 2020

As we are into the second half of the year 2020, a pattern of the “new normal” is emerging due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Surgical masks have become one of our daily necessities in life. We practise proper hand hygiene, and pay more attention to environmental and personal hygiene. Social distancing is a requirement to prevent spread of the infection. Just when we are getting used to these “new normal”, a wake-up call has arrived. At the time of writing, Hong Kong’s three-week run of no local confirmed cases has been broken by a number of newly confirmed COVID-19 local cases with unknown source of infection as well as an outbreak in an old aged home. On the one hand, the threat of new clusters of local cases serves as an important reminder for all of us not to let down our guards. And on the other, it signifies that the risk of a community outbreak is escalating.

In order to combat the next wave of the pandemic, we must continue to be prepared, stay highly vigilant and reinforce social distancing, household environmental hygiene, and the appropriate infection control measures, especially in practising personal and hand hygiene and wearing surgical mask properly +/- using appropriate personal protective equipment based on the location of work and the nature of clinical duties.

As early testing and detection is an important facet of the prevailing strategy against COVID-19 in Hong Kong, please continue to request deep throat saliva (DTS) specimens from indicated patients in the community according to advice by the Centre of Health Protection (CHP). CHP has also announced that the most common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, malaise, dry cough and shortness of breath. Other symptoms include nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, sore throat, diarrhoea, loss of taste or smell , skin rash or discolouration of fingers or toes, etc. Some people become infected but only have very mild or non-specific symptoms. CHP has also been recommending that DTS specimens should be collected from patients with any symptoms, irrespective of their travel history and clinical severity. And for paediatric patients, stool collection may be considered. For ease of reference, please find enclosed again the link to CHP’s letter to doctors on the relevant procedures/steps related to DTS specimen collection. (Please refer to the WEBSITEBy the same token, our College has recently co-signed a letter in conjunction with CHP, Hong Kong Academy of Medicine, and other professional organisations, appealing to doctors to continue the great efforts in early testing and detection for COVID-19. The letter is enclosed in this issue of FP Links for your ease of reference and perusal.

Our annual Hong Kong Primary Care Conference (HKPCC) scheduled on 12th and 13th September 2020 (Saturday – Sunday) is to be held online for the first time due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme of the Conference is, “2020 Vision: Health for All”, which encompasses our continuing effort in providing quality healthcare to everyone in the community. Despite the change of format to online conference, HKPCC continues to serve as an excellent platform for expertise exchange among clinical experts and practitioners from different specialties across the healthcare sectors. It consists of a whole range of educational events as usual, namely plenary sessions, workshops, discussion forum and seminars. Some of them require prior registrations, therefore, please do mark your diaries and try to enroll early to our first-ever digital HKPCC.

Due to the unstable situations and ongoing developments of the COVID-19 pandemic, the College Council has recently deliberated at length on the arrangement options for this year’s Conferment Ceremony and Dr Sun Yat Sen Oration which were originally scheduled on 13 September 2020. Finally, we have come to a difficult decision to postpone the Ceremony as well as the Oration to a later date. We hope that we would be able to host the 2020 Ceremony later this year or early next year if the COVID-19 situation improves and other related circumstances allow. However, we would also be prepared to celebrate with the new fellows, diplomates and awardees of 2020 and 2021 in next year’s Conferment Ceremony tentatively scheduled in June 2021. In any case, we would find a way to deliver this year’s diplomas and certificates safely to their rightful recipients. It is envisaged that further details relating to the above will be communicated with you as soon as possible.

With your tremendous continuing support, our beloved College is reaching her 43rd birthday this month. Happy 43rd Birthday to HKCFP!

Let’s continue to work together in combating the COVID-19 pandemic!

Please keep well and stay safe!

Dr. David V K CHAO