Influenza activity continues to drop in past month
The positive percentage of SI viruses among respiratory specimens received by the CHP peaked at 40.86 per cent in the week of July 9 and further dropped from 25.36 to 17.96 per cent from the week of July 30 to that of August 6.
In the same period, the number of institutional outbreaks of influenza-like illness decreased from 15 (affecting 73 persons) to 12 (68 persons). As of yesterday (August 15), five (18 persons) had been recorded this week.
Regarding severe influenza cases, in adults, 534 cases of influenza-associated admission to the Intensive Care Unit or death (including 387 deaths) were recorded from May 5 to yesterday in the enhanced surveillance with the Hospital Authority and private hospitals.
In children, in the same period, 19 cases of severe influenza-associated complication or death (three deaths) were detected. The last case was reported on August 2.
"As observed in previous seasons, we expect that local influenza will still be active for a while as it takes time for influenza activity to return to baseline from the peak," a spokesman for the CHP said.
The public and travellers should maintain good personal and environmental hygiene for protection against influenza and other respiratory illnesses both locally and during travel:
- Receive seasonal influenza vaccination for personal protection;
- Wash hands with liquid soap and water properly whenever possibly contaminated;
- When hands are not visibly soiled, clean them with 70 to 80 per cent alcohol-based handrub as an effective alternative;
- Cover the nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing, and wash hands thoroughly afterwards;
- Dispose of soiled tissue paper properly in a lidded rubbish bin;
- Put on a surgical mask when respiratory symptoms develop;
- Maintain good indoor ventilation;
- When influenza is prevalent, avoid going to crowded or poorly ventilated public places; high-risk individuals may consider putting on surgical masks in such places; and
- Maintain a balanced diet, exercise regularly, take adequate rest, do not smoke and avoid overstress.
The public may visit the CHP's influenza page and weekly Flu Express for more information.
Ends/Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Issued at HKT 18:20
Issued at HKT 18:20