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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 (October 16) investigating a case of severe paediatric influenza A infection.
     The case involves an 11-month-old baby girl with good past health, who has presented with fever, vomiting and diarrhoea since yesterday (October 15). She was taken to the Accident and Emergency Department at Prince of Wales Hospital on the same day and was admitted for medical attention. She developed seizure today and was subsequently transferred to the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at the hospital for further management.
     Her respiratory specimen tested positive for influenza A virus upon laboratory testing. The clinical diagnosis was influenza A infection complicated with encephalopathy. She is now in critical condition.
     Initial enquiries revealed that the patient had not received seasonal influenza vaccination for this season and had no travel history during the incubation period. Her home contacts have remained asymptomatic so far.
     The CHP's investigations are ongoing.
     "The latest surveillance data showed that the overall local seasonal influenza activity was at a low level. The 2019/20 seasonal influenza vaccination programmes including the Vaccination Subsidy Scheme and the Government Vaccination Programme are launched on October 9 and 23 respectively. Eligible persons should receive a seasonal influenza vaccination in a timely manner to better protect themselves in the next winter influenza season," a spokesman for the CHP said.
     "Meanwhile, the public should continue to adopt strict personal, hand and environmental hygiene practices against respiratory illnesses and other infectious diseases," the spokesman added.
     The public may visit the CHP's influenza page and weekly Flu Express for more information.
Ends/Wednesday, October 16, 2019
Issued at HKT 20:22
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