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Public Health Group gets first-hand knowledge at Amoy Gardens


The Public Health Group of the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) Expert Committee visited the Amoy Gardens this (July 9) morning to have first-hand knowledge of the environmental factors contributing to the outbreak of SARS cases in the estate in late March.

The Group was first briefed by the community physician of the Department of Health, Dr Lee Siu-yuen and medical and health officer, Dr Law Yuk-lung, on the physical layout and design of the blocks in the estate.

Members then inspected Block E (particularly units 7 and 8) from the podium and studied the exterior building design including the arrangement of the disposal systems.

They then visited a flat in Block E to have a better understanding of the bathroom setting of a typical household in Amoy Gardens, where coronavirus was suspected to have spread through dried-up U-traps, facilitated by powerful exhaust fans and the light well effect.

Acting housing manager, Mr Cheung Sum-tin, later escorted the group to the Lower Ngau Tau Kok Estate where members could see for themselves the physical layout and environmental conditions of the public housing estate where a number of SARS cases were reported following the Amoy Gardens outbreak.

After the site visit, the Public Health Group later met with legislators of the Panel on Health Services to heed their views and concerns on the Government's handling of the SARS epidemic.

During today's meeting, members would also deliberate on the SARS situation after the Amoy Gardens outbreak and public health control measures implemented during the SARS period. They would also meet with some seven representatives of the Amoy Gardens Residents' Association.

End/Wednesday, July 9, 2003


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