Update on number of dengue fever cases
Regarding imported cases, from September 15 to 22, four were recorded and the patients had been to the Philippines, Thailand, the Solomon Islands and Indonesia during the incubation period. The 96 imported cases so far in 2016 were mainly from Indonesia (32), Thailand (14) and the Philippines (14).
As for local cases, four have been detected to date in 2016. Persons who have been to the vicinity of Central/Mid-Levels or Tin Ma Court in Wong Tai Sin with DF symptoms should call the CHP's hotline (2125 2266) for laboratory investigation or referral as appropriate. No abnormalities have been detected so far.
Members of the public, especially residents and workers in Central or Wong Tai Sin, should:
- Inspect the household or workplace to check for potential mosquito breeding sites and remove them. Leave no stagnant water;
- Apply DEET-containing insect repellents to exposed parts of the body and clothing; and
- If fever, rash, pain behind the eyes or muscle or joint pain develop, seek medical attention early.
In Guangdong, 75 cases were reported in the past week, the highest weekly number since mid-August, rising from 43 in the preceding week. Among them, 70 were local cases with 54 from Chao'an in Chaozhou. This brings the total of cases in 2016 to 258 as of September 18 and 163 were local cases. Cases were mainly from Chaozhou, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
In Taiwan, 377 local cases have been filed to date in 2016, 42 670 cases in Thailand, 11 827 in Singapore since January 3, and 244 in Japan since January 4.
Dengue viruses encompass four serotypes, each of which can lead to DF and severe dengue (dengue haemorrhagic fever). Symptoms of first infection are usually mild. Once recovered, immunity to that serotype will develop, but subsequent infections of other serotypes are more likely to result in severe dengue, which is potentially fatal.
DF is transmitted to humans by bites of infective Aedes mosquitoes. When a dengue patient is bitten by a mosquito, it is infected and may spread the disease by biting others. In Hong Kong, the principal vector, Aedes aegypti, is not found, but the prevailing species, Aedes albopictus, can also spread the disease.
There is no locally registered dengue vaccine in Hong Kong. Eliminating stagnant water as breeding sites for mosquitoes and avoiding mosquito bites are key to preventing DF.
"Apart from general measures, travellers returning from affected areas should apply insect repellent for 14 days upon arrival in Hong Kong. If feeling unwell, seek medical advice promptly and provide travel details to the doctor," the spokesman said.
The public should call 1823 in case of mosquito problems and may visit the following pages for more information: the DF page of the CHP and the Travel Health Service, the latest Travel Health News, tips for using insect repellents, the CHP Facebook Page and YouTube Channel, and the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department's Guidebook on Control and Prevention of Mosquito Breeding.
Ends/Friday, September 23, 2016
Issued at HKT 15:50
Issued at HKT 15:50