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Public urged to prevent Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (May 20) called on people to maintain strict personal and environmental hygiene to prevent Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD).

     The appeal followed an outbreak of the disease in a kindergarten in Tai Po affecting 21 children.

     The affected children, 14 boys and 7 girls aged between three and five, developed oral ulcers, fever and rash on their hands or feet from April 26.

     All of them sought medical consultation and none required hospitalisation. All the children are now in stable condition.

     Laboratory test on the stool sample of one of the affected children was positive for group A Coxsackie virus.

     The CHP has put the institution under medical surveillance and provided health advice to the staff.

     To prevent HFMD, members of the public, especially management of institutions, should adopt the following measures:

*    Maintain good air circulation.
*    Wash hands before meals and after going to the toilet, handling diapers or other stool-soiled materials.
*    Keep hands clean and wash hands properly, especially when they are made dirty by respiratory secretions, such as after sneezing.
*    Cover nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing and dispose of nasal and mouth discharge properly.
*    Clean children's toys and other objects thoroughly and frequently with 1:99 diluted household bleach, followed by rinsing/wiping with clean water.
*    Children who are ill should be kept out of school until their fever and rash have subsided and all the vesicles have dried and crusted.
*    Avoid going to overcrowded places.

Ends/Thursday, May 20, 2010
Issued at HKT 19:21


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