Update on measles cases

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) is today (April 6) investigating an additional case of measles infection.

​     As at 4pm today, one case, which involves a worker at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA), was recorded. The 25-year-old man with good past health developed fever on April 2 and rash since April 4. He consulted a general practitioner on April 5 and then attended the Accident and Emergency Department at North Lantau Hospital and was transferred to Princess Margaret Hospital for admission and treatment on the same day. A laboratory test of his respiratory specimen was positive for the measles virus. He has been in a stable condition and reported to have measles vaccination. He had travelled to Thailand during the incubation period but had no travel history during the communicable period.

     According to the patient, he did not have contact with measles patients during the incubation period. The home contacts of the patient have remained asymptomatic so far and have been put under medical surveillance.

​     Upon notification of the case, the CHP immediately commenced epidemiological investigations and conducted relevant contact tracing. Investigations are ongoing. The public places the patient visited during the communicable period are listed in the appendix.

     "The incubation period (the period from infection to appearance of illness) of measles ranges from seven days to 21 days. Members of the general public who have visited the public places listed in the appendix during the period should observe if they develop relevant symptoms, such as fever, skin rash, cough, runny nose and red eyes in seven to 21 days (the medical surveillance period). If symptoms arise, they should wear surgical masks, stop going to work or school and avoid going to crowded places. They should also avoid contact with non-immune persons, especially persons with weakened immunity, pregnant women and children aged below 1. Those suspected to have been infected are advised to seek medical attention as early as possible and reveal relevant contact history of measles to healthcare professionals," a spokesman for the DH said.

     Upon confirmation of measles outbreak, the DH has implemented control measures at the airport including vaccination and blood testing services. A total of 18 persons received measles vaccination at the vaccination stations as at 6pm today, bringing the cumulative number of vaccinations given to 7 937. A hotline (2125 1122) has been set up for public enquiries and operates from 9am to 5.45pm daily. As of 5pm today, the hotline had received a total of 2 888 enquiries.

     From tomorrow to next Friday (April 7 to 12), the vaccination quota for the measles vaccination station at the airport remains at 500 doses daily. Vaccination to eligible airport staff will be provided to the following target groups:

(1) Born in or after 1967, and have not received two doses of measles vaccination, and have not been infected with measles before, and with evidence of living with infants under 1 year old or living with pregnant women; or

(2) Have laboratory evidence of testing not positive against measles antibody (IgG).

     Details of evidence are as follows:

(a) Supporting documents for living with infants under 1-year-old: for example birth certificate, discharge summary or vaccination card of the infant

(b) Supporting documents for living with pregnant women: for example, positive pregnancy tests or antenatal follow-up cards of the pregnant women

(c) Supporting documents for laboratory evidence: for example blood results from the DH's measles serology test or any laboratory within the past 12 months

     The venue and operation hours of the airport vaccination station are as follows:
Venue: Multi-function Room, HKIA Tower (Level 5, Terminal 2)
Hours: April 7 to 12
10am to 1pm
2pm to 6pm

     As for the blood test service, the DH will continue with the provision of a measles serology test service for airport staff to identify those who need the measles vaccination. From next Monday to Friday (April 8 to 12), the DH will provide blood test service daily to around 100 airport staff who were born in or after 1967, with priority to be given to staff belonging to target group (1). The blood test service is suspended from April 5 to 7.

     The venue and operation hours of the airport blood test station are as follows:
Venue: South side before the Immigration Hall at Level 3 of Terminal 2 (non-restricted area)
Hours: April 8 to 12
10am to 1pm
2pm to 6pm

Ends/Saturday, April 6, 2019
Issued at HKT 20:20