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CHP investigates case of severe paediatric influenza A infection
     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is today (June 9) investigating a case of severe paediatric influenza A infection.

     "We urge the public, particularly young children and the elderly, to observe strict personal, hand and environmental hygiene amid the influenza season. If influenza-like symptoms develop, children, the elderly and those with chronic diseases should immediately seek medical advice for prompt diagnosis and treatment," a spokesman for the CHP said.

     The girl aged 12 was admitted to Tuen Mun Hospital on May 22 for her underlying illnesses. She has developed fever since June 1, followed by gastrointestinal bleeding and shock yesterday (June 8). She was then transferred to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit for further management.

     Her nasopharyngeal aspirate tested positive for influenza A(H1) virus upon laboratory testing. The clinical diagnosis was influenza A infection complicated with shock and she is in a serious condition.

     Initial enquiries revealed that the patient had received seasonal influenza vaccination for the current season and had no travel history in the incubation period. Her home contacts have remained asymptomatic so far.

     The public should maintain good personal and environmental hygiene against influenza and other respiratory illnesses:
  • Receive seasonal influenza vaccination for personal protection;
  • Wash hands with liquid soap and water properly whenever possibly contaminated;
  • When hands are not visibly soiled, clean them with 70 to 80 per cent alcohol-based handrub as an effective alternative;
  • Wash or clean hands frequently, especially before touching the mouth, nose or eyes, or after touching public installations such as handrails or door knobs;
  • Cover the nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing, and wash hands thoroughly afterwards;
  • Dispose of soiled tissue paper properly in a lidded rubbish bin;
  • Put on a surgical mask when respiratory symptoms develop;
  • Maintain good indoor ventilation;
  • When influenza is prevalent, avoid going to crowded or poorly ventilated public places; high-risk individuals may consider putting on surgical masks when staying in such places; and
  • Maintain a balanced diet, exercise regularly, take adequate rest, do not smoke and avoid overstress.

     The public may visit the CHP's influenza pageweekly Flu Express report and vaccination schemes page for more information.
Ends/Friday, June 9, 2017
Issued at HKT 17:05
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