HK Department of Health confirms nine dengue cases ‘imported’ from PH

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An Aedes aegypti mosquito. (Flickr/Oregon State University)

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the HK Department of Health has urged the public to maintain strict environmental hygiene and mosquito control after confirming 47 dengue cases, including nine “imported” from the Philippines.

The CHP reminded the public to also maintain personal protective measures during travel abroad, noting that all the 47 dengue fever (DF) cases came from overseas

“From July 6 to 12, the CHP recorded three confirmed DF cases. The patients had been to Thailand (two cases) and the Philippines (one case) during the incubation period,” the CHP said in a statement on July 13.

“As of (July 12), 47 cases had been confirmed this year, all of which were imported cases. The cases were mainly imported from Thailand (21), the Philippines (nine) and Cambodia (six),” it added.

The CHP said dengue fever remains endemic in some areas in Asia and in other continents.

“The latest figures for 2018 reveal that 28,732 cases have been recorded in Thailand, 1,467 in Singapore (since December 31, 2017) and 62 in Japan. Two local cases have been recorded to date in Taiwan in 2018,” the agency said.

“In the Americas, the latest figures indicate that 161,154 and 15,131 cases have been filed in Brazil and Mexico respectively in 2018,” it added.

To prevent the spread of dengue fever-spreading mosquitos, the CHP urged members of the public to thoroughly check all gully traps, roof gutters, surface channels and drains to prevent blockage.

“Scrub and clean drains and surface channels with an alkaline detergent compound at least once a week to remove any deposited mosquito eggs,” the CHP said.

“Properly dispose of refuse, such as soft drink cans, empty bottles and boxes, in covered litter containers. Completely change the water of flowers and plants at least once a week. The use of saucers should be avoided if possible,” it added.

The CHP said people should take personal protective measures such as wearing light-coloured long-sleeved clothes and trousers and apply insect repellent containing DEET to clothing or uncovered areas of the body when doing outdoor activities.

“To reduce the risk of infections spread by mosquitoes, apart from general measures, travellers returning from affected areas should apply insect repellent for 14 days (DF) or at least 21 days (Zika virus infection) upon arrival in Hong Kong,” the CHP said.

“If feeling unwell, seek medical advice promptly and provide travel details to the doctor,” it added.


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