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FEHD steps up mosquito prevention and control work
     In view of this year's first local case of dengue fever (DF) which was announced by the Department of Health (DH) yesterday (August 7), the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (August 8) sent staff to conduct entomological surveys and carry out mosquito preventive and control work in areas within a 500-metre radius of the workplace and residence of the patient.

     An FEHD spokesman said, "The FEHD has been very concerned about mosquito infestation. Upon receipt of the DH's notification last night that the patient of the DF case lives in a unit on Cedar Street, Prince Edward, and works in the construction site of West Kowloon Station of the Hong Kong Section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link (XRL), we have today arranged staff to carry out inspections at the construction site and conduct entomological surveys in areas within a 500m radius of the construction site and his residence. The FEHD has also arranged pest control contractors to carry out mosquito prevention and control work at the above-mentioned areas, including clearing potential mosquito breeding grounds in the vicinity of Cedar Street, and conducting fogging operations, applying larvicides, and clearing stagnant water and disused articles in the outer area of the construction site of West Kowloon Station of the XRL and the vicinity of Kwong Wah Hospital. The FEHD has also collected samples of Aedes albopictus from the areas for virus testing, with a view to identifying the infection source of the DF case.

     "Furthermore, the FEHD has advised relevant government departments, construction sites and private housing estates within the areas to step up anti-mosquito measures in areas under their management, and provided them with technical advice to facilitate the implementation of effective mosquito prevention measures. The FEHD and the Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the DH have also held two health education talks today at the Henry G Leong Yaumatei Community Centre and the construction site of the XRL respectively for residents and construction site workers. To strengthen surveillance on the places the patient had visited, the surveillance period of the ovitraps for Aedes albopictus for Tsim Sha Tsui, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Mong Kok, Ho Man Tin and Sham Shui Po East in August and September will be extended from one week to two weeks per month."

     In addition, the FEHD will step up inspections and take out prosecutions under the relevant ordinance against mosquito breeding. The FEHD set up four Pest Control Inspection Teams in May to step up inspections of construction sites and enforcement actions against mosquito breeding. In 2017 (as of August 4), the FEHD has instituted 135 prosecutions for mosquito breeding found in relevant premises under the Public Health and Municipal Services Ordinance (Cap 132), comprising 127 cases involving construction sites and eight cases involving other premises.

     The FEHD and relevant government departments will continue to strengthen public education and publicity to remind the public to stay alert against the potential risk of mosquito-borne diseases, including DF, Japanese encephalitis and Zika Virus Infection, and to continue to carry out mosquito prevention and control measures and remove potential mosquito breeding grounds at home.

     Epidemiological investigations of the CHP into the local case of DF are ongoing. CHP officers have conducted questionnaire surveys in the vicinity of the residence of the patient concerned. As of 4pm today, 26 questionnaires involving 68 persons had been collected. Upon enquiries, none reported DF symptoms or required a blood test so far. No irregularities have also been detected so far. The CHP's medical surveillance is under way. The CHP's DF hotline (2125 1133) operates from 9am to 5.45pm.
Ends/Tuesday, August 8, 2017
Issued at HKT 19:46
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