Hong Kong City’s new health minister, Lo Chung-mau, announced on Monday that from July 17th all Covid-19 patients in the city undergoing home quarantine, will be required to wear an electronic bracelet to stop them from leaving their homes.
Lo also announced his intentions to roll out systems adopted from mainland China, which will prohibit Covid patients from visiting public venues.
The technology involves the LeaveHomeSafe app, upon which are stored QR codes, with Covid positive patients and overseas travellers undergoing mandatory quarantine registering a red and yellow code respectively thus denying access both groups.
Lo previously made headlines in February, when he said the Hong Kong must maintain a Covid “Zero tolerance” policy, and that attempts to live with the virus would “ get us all killed”
Many observers are also voicing concerns over the implication of this development on the potential evolution of lockdown restrictions that may be experienced in the West during the coming autumn and winter.
The idea of lockdown itself became normalised in western societies through the plaudits offered by WHO officials and government ministers in the west, to the draconian methods of suppression exhibited by the Chinese authorities in Wuhan.
After the horrific footage and reports that emerged of residents locked in their homes with no access to food supplies during Shanghai’s brutal lockdown in April, fears are that if Hong Kong’s methods, which reflect an evolution in existing Western track and trace systems, are again heralded as effective by technocrats and health officials, that they may arrive on European shores by winter.