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Confirmed cholera case under investigation

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (July 6) is investigating a confirmed case of cholera and reminds people to observe good personal, food and environmental hygiene, whether in Hong Kong or travelling abroad.

     The case involves a 25-year-old man who developed diarrhoea since June 27. He attended Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole Hospital for medical consultation but did not require hospitalisation.  

     Laboratory tests later showed that culture of his stool specimen yielded Vibrio cholerae O1 Ogawa.

     The patient has been admitted to the isolation ward of Princess Margaret Hospital and is in stable condition.

     He did not have history of recent travel. His home contacts have no symptoms of cholera.

     This is the first case of cholera reported this year. There were nine cholera cases in 2010, none in 2009 and seven in 2008.

     A CHP spokesman said, "Whether in Hong Kong or travelling abroad, people should pay attention to hygiene and take measures to prevent cholera and food-borne infection."

     People are urged to:

* Wash and cook seafood thoroughly before eating, particularly crustaceans and bivalves such as shrimps, crabs, oysters and clams;
* Wash hands before eating and after going to the toilet;
* Handle raw and cooked food with separate utensils to prevent cross-contamination;
* Keep raw and cooked food separately;
* Store food in a refrigerator (at 4 degrees Celsius or below) and thoroughly reheat leftover food before eating; and
* Keep the environment clean.

     When travelling outside Hong Kong, they should:

* Always wash hands before eating and after going to the toilet;
* Eat only thoroughly cooked food and food from sealed packs or cans;
* Avoid cold dishes such as salad and ice cream;
* Drink only boiled water, canned or bottled drinks, and pasteurised milk or dairy products;
* Do not add ice to drinks and do not drink fresh fruit juice that has been prepared beforehand;
* Do not patronise illegal food hawkers; and
* Wash fruit thoroughly before eating and do not eat fruit that has already been peeled or cut open.

     For more preventive measures against cholera, people may visit the CHP's website (

Ends/Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Issued at HKT 18:01


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