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Public urged to heighten vigilance against Mpox
     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (May 2) said that in view of the recent locally acquired confirmed Mpox (also known as Monkeypox) cases, which involved men who have sex with men (MSM) conducting high risk sexual practices, the CHP urged high-risk individuals to receive vaccination early. They should seek medical attention as soon as possible if they experience Mpox symptoms.

     There are six Mpox cases recorded in Hong Kong so far. According to the CHP's epidemiological investigations, some of the recent cases had conducted high risk sexual practices in Hong Kong, which reflected a risk on the spread of Mpox disease locally. In this regard, the CHP will set up an Mpox telephone hotline to enable those who suspect or are concerned they have had high-risk contact with confirmed patients, in particular MSM or those who have sexual practices with strangers, to make enquiries and receive relevant health advice. The Mpox hotline (2125 2373) will be launched tomorrow (May 3) and operate from Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays) from 9am to 5pm.

     The CHP reminded members of the public to heighten vigilance and avoid close physical contact with persons suspected of contracting Mpox. Meanwhile, high-risk target groups are advised to take precautionary measures, especially to receive Mpox vaccination as soon as possible. High-risk target groups, including individuals with high-risk sexual practices, e.g. MSM, having multiple sexual partners, sex workers, having a history of sexually transmitted infection within the past 12 months, should seek medical attention from private doctors or visit Social Hygiene Service Clinics (SocHS) as soon as possible if they experience relevant symptoms, including rash, fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, exhaustion, muscle pain, and severe headaches. Further information on SocHS clinics including their locations is available at www.dh.gov.hk/english/tele/tele_chc/tele_chc_shcf.html and www.dh.gov.hk/english/tele/tele_chc/tele_chc_shcm.html.

     The Mpox vaccination programme for high-risk groups commenced on October 5 last year. Currently, high-risk target groups can receive an Mpox walk-in vaccination at any of the DH's six SocHS (namely Wan Chai Male SocHS, Wan Chai Female SocHS, Yau Ma Tei Male SocHS, Yung Fung Shee SocHS, Fanling SocHS and Tuen Mun SocHS).

     Meanwhile, the DH's Integrated Treatment Centre in Kowloon Bay, and the Hospital Authority's Special Medical Clinics at Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Princess Margaret Hospital will continue to provide Mpox vaccination services for their clients.

     For more details, please visit the CHP's page on Mpox.
Ends/Tuesday, May 2, 2023
Issued at HKT 18:55
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