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Strategy of human swine influenza

     The Education Bureau (EDB) issued a letter to all schools today (May 12) informing them of the Government's refined strategy of human swine influenza (HSI) plan.  The EDB will consider whether to close first all kindergartens, kindergartens-cum-child care centres, primary schools and special schools for 14 days in the first instance of a confirmed local HSI case with no identifiable link, and to review the situation as appropriate.

     A confirmed local case refers to that with no identifiable link, such as travel to an affected area in the previous seven days, or exposure to a confirmed index case with such history or his secondary contact.

     An EDB spokesman said: "The refined strategy is a prudent measure designed to safeguard our young school children as they are more vulnerable to respiratory viruses, including HSI."

     The EDB will make a decision on class suspension with due consideration to the advice by the health authorities.

     The spokesman said: "Although there is no sign of spread of the disease for the time being, we must not lose vigilance and must sustain the prevention work."

     Schools can make reference to the "Handbook on Prevention of Human Swine Influenza in Schools" issued by the EDB on preventive measures on HSI, arrangements for suspension and resumption of classes.

     "We are glad to learn that all our schools have put in place appropriate measures to keep campuses clean and to strengthen students' awareness on personal hygiene," the spokesman said.

     "We appeal to all schools to continue their efforts to join the whole community in the fight against the pandemic threat," he added.

     The letter and the Handbook have been uploaded onto the EDB's website

Ends/Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Issued at HKT 21:09


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