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Source: Hong Kong Information Services

A one-off ex-gratia cash allowance of $5,000 for locally confirmed COVID-19 patients is open for eligible Hong Kong residents to apply from today, the Social Welfare Department announced.

The department said the one-off allowance aims to remove the potentially infected people’s concern over coming forward to take COVID-19 tests given that they would suffer from financial hardship while being hospitalised for treatment.

Applicants must be Hong Kong residents who are confirmed by the Department of Health to have contracted COVID-19 locally on or after November 22, and are currently employed but not entitled to paid sick leave or are self-employed and are facing financial hardship while being hospitalised in public hospitals for COVID-19 treatment.

They are not required to undergo any specific means test, but have to declare that they meet the eligibility criteria and provide basic information about their current employment.

The department will assess the applications and may seek to verify relevant information with concerned government departments, the Hospital Authority or the applicants’ employers as appropriate.

Eligible applicants may apply for the allowance through medical social workers of the hospitals where they are receiving or have received treatment.

They may also submit the applications themselves or appoint a family member or an agent to submit applications on their behalf.

For those who cannot complete their applications while receiving treatment, they may do so as soon as possible after they have been discharged from hospitals.

Contact the medical social services units of respective hospitals for enquiries.

MIL OSI Asia Pacific News