Hong Kong’s number of confirmed coronavirus cases has risen to 973 as the government added 13 new infections, aged 21 to 66, on Thursday.

The announcement came weeks after authorities implemented a raft of social distancing measures, slashing the number of customers at food outlets and shuttering thousands of entertainment businesses in a bid to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the communicable disease branch at the Centre for Health Protection. Photo: RTHK screenshot.

Ten of the latest cases had a travel history and two were study abroad students. Among the remaining three were a 33-year-old man who visited Centre Stage bar in Wan Chai, a 37-year-old man who was the father of a baby boy confirmed with the virus last Wednesday, and a 43-year-old man residing in Sheung Wan.

First detected in China’s Hubei province, Covid-19 has infected more than 1,487,800 people across at least 184 countries and territories, leading to more than 88,600 deaths.

Hong Kong has recorded four deaths from the virus. Eight of the 973 confirmed cases are in serious condition while 14 are in a critical condition, the head of the communicable disease branch at the Centre for Health Protection Dr Chuang Shuk-kwan said.

File photo: GovHK.

“The general public should observe the social distancing measures as far as possible, even if they go to fast food shops, they should try to take away or if they sit down, try to avoid close contact with each other and minimise the number of persons staying at the restaurant,” she added.

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Jennifer Creery

Jennifer Creery is a Hong Kong-born British journalist, interested in minority rights and urban planning. She holds a BA in English at King's College London and has studied Mandarin at National Taiwan University.