Hong Kong is struggling to contain an outbreak of the more contagious, but less lethal, Covid-19 omicron variant, with hospitals running over-capacity. Images show mostly elderly patients on hospital beds lined up outside A&E departments, whilst hours-long queues form for community testing.

People lie in hospital beds outside Caritas Medical Centre in Hong Kong on February 15, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.

The city has reported 26,670 infections and 224 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic over two years ago.

Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
People lie in hospital beds outside the Caritas Medical Centre in Hong Kong on February 16, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po. Photo: Kenny Huang / Studio Incendo.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po. Photo: Kenny Huang / Studio Incendo.
Police wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) stand as people wait outside the Pok Oi hospital in Hong Kong on February 15, 2022, as the city faces its worst coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po. Photo: Kenny Huang / Studio Incendo.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po on Wednesday, February 16. Photo: inmediahk.net, via CC2.0.
Caritas Medical Centre in Sham Shui Po. Photo: Kenny Huang / Studio Incendo.
People queue at a mobile specimen collection station for Covid-19 testing in Hong Kong’s Mongkok district on February 10, 2022 as authorities scrambled to ramp up testing capacity following a record high number of new infections. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
Testing at a housing estate. Photo: GovHK.
Government implemented lockdown and compulsory testing in Yuen Long. Photo: GovHK.
Authorities carried out mandatory Covid-19 testing in parts of Tai Po on February 3, 2022. Photo: GovHK.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club Shau Kei Wan clinic has been converted to a designated Covid-19 facility as the city struggles to battle the fifth wave of the pandemic. Photo: Ben Marans/HKFP.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club Shau Kei Wan clinic has been converted to a designated Covid-19 facility as the city struggles to battle the fifth wave of the pandemic. Photo: Ben Marans/HKFP.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club Shau Kei Wan clinic has been converted to a designated Covid-19 facility as the city struggles to battle the fifth wave of the pandemic. Photo: Ben Marans/HKFP.

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Hong Kong Free Press is a new, non-profit, English-language news source seeking to unite critical voices on local and national affairs. Free of charge and completely independent, HKFP arrives amid rising concerns over declining press freedom in Hong Kong and during an important time in the city’s constitutional development.