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Government closely monitoring scarlet fever

     The Secretary for Food and Health, Dr York Chow, today (June 22) called on members of the public to maintain vigilance against scarlet fever in view of the increase in the number of reported cases in Hong Kong in the past two months.

     Dr Chow said the Government has been closely monitoring the scarlet fever situation and will continue to adopt every necessary measure to prevent and control the spread of the disease.

     "The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health, the Hospital Authority, the Hong Kong Medical Association and the Department of Microbiology of the University of Hong Kong have been paying close attention to the latest situation. It is expected that the peak of infections of scarlet fever, which has mostly affected children under 10, will last for the coming two months," he said.

     While there was no cause for the public to be over-worried, as scarlet fever can be treated with appropriate antibiotics in time, Dr Chow appealed to people to strictly observe personal and environmental hygiene measures including cleaning and washing hands properly, especially after they are dirtied by respiratory secretions; covering the nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing; and disposing of nasal and mouth discharges properly.

     "Parents should pay attention to the health of their children. Children who are ill and have developed symptoms of scarlet fever should stay at home to rest and their parents should take them to seek medical treatment as soon as possible," Dr Chow said.

Ends/Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Issued at HKT 15:08


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