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Take precautions against dengue fever when travelling abroad

Dengue fever is now endemic in more than 100 countries in Africa, the Americas, the Eastern Mediterranean, Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific. This includes various popular tourist destinations for Hong Kong people including the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.

Travellers planning to travel in these areas should take precautions against the disease.

Cumulative reported number of dengue cases since 01/01/2016 *

 

Cumulative reported no.
of cases since 01/01/2016

Source of information and date of report

Australia

1,930

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Brazil

1,452,284

World Health Organization, 23 November 2016

Cambodia

1,771

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Guangdong

454

Health and Family Planning Commission of Guangdong Province, 14 November 2016

India

94,519

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, India, 20 November 2016

Japan

315#

National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan, 22 November 2016

Lao PDR

4,658

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Malaysia

91,879

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Mexico

118,841

World Health Organization, 23 November 2016

Philippines

101,401

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Singapore

12,729^

Singapore National Environment Agency, 24 November 2016

Sri Lanka

46,236

Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka, 23 November 2016

Taiwan

378”

CDC, ROC (Taiwan), 24 November 2016

Thailand

55,073

Ministry of Public Health, Thailand, 15 November 2016

Vietnam

63,504

World Health Organization, 15 November 2016

Remarks:
* Dengue reporting systems vary by country.
“ Locally-acquired
^ Cumulative cases since 3 January 2016
# Cumulative cases since 4 January 2016.

Travellers should stay vigilant against dengue fever and adopt the following personal preventive measures against mosquito bite:

* Always wear loose, light-coloured long-sleeved tops and trousers;
* Stay in air-conditioned residence or places with mosquito screens;
* If mosquito screen or air-conditioning is absent, aerosol insecticide and bed nets are advised;
* Use insect repellents containing DEET on exposed skin and clothing;
* Use insect repellents containing DEET apart from applying sunscreen while staying in beaches;
* Re-apply insect repellents according to instructions during the trip;
* Carry a portable bed nets and apply permethrin on it as well as to clothes if travelling to rural areas where dengue fever is prevalent.

Travellers returning from areas where dengue fever is prevalent should seek medical advice as soon as possible if they feel unwell and provide travel details to their doctors.


Mainland: Avian influenza, human [Update]

The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health received notification of an additional human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) in Hunan from the National Health and Family Planning Commission, and again urged the public to maintain strict personal, food and environmental hygiene both locally and during travel.

The female patient aged 47 from Wugang developed symptoms on November 18 and was hospitalised. Her condition was critical at that time.

From 2014 to date, 15 human cases of avian influenza A(H5N6) have been reported by the Mainland health authorities.

(Source: Centre for Health Protection of Department of Health 28 November 2016)

 

Finland: Avian influenza, wild birds

Cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N8) have been reported in Finland.

(Source: ProMED-mail 27 November 2016)

 

Sweden: Avian influenza, poultry

Cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5) have been reported in a hen farm in Sweden.

(Source: ProMED-mail 27 November 2016)

 

India: Malaria

Till September this year, 61,456 cases of malaria have been reported in Jharkhand, India.

(Source: ProMED-mail 26 November 2016)

 

India: Avian Influenza, birds

Cases of H5N8 avian influenza were reported in Karnataka, India.

(Source: World Organisation for Animal Health 25 November 2016)

 

Niger: Rift Valley Fever

A first outbreak of Rift Valley Fever was confirmed in Niger.

(Source: World Health Organization 24 November 2016)

 

South Korea: Avian influenza, poultry

Cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N6) have been reported in North Chungcheong province and South Jeolla province in South Korea.

(Source: Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy 23 November 2016)

 

Singapore: Zika virus infection [Update]

The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government today (November 22) removed the Amber Outbound Travel Alert (OTA) for Singapore.

A Government spokesman said, "The World Health Organization (WHO) issued a statement on November 18 which indicated that Zika virus and associated consequences remain a significant enduring public health challenge requiring intense action but no longer represent a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. In parallel with the WHO's statement, the Government has reassessed the situation in Singapore. It was noted that the number of Zika virus infection cases recorded has decreased from a peak of 215 cases per week in late August/early September to four to 12 cases per week in the last two months. It is expected that the situation of Singapore having the number of Zika virus infection cases reduced to zero is unlikely. Based on the latest public health risk assessment, the Government has decided to remove the Amber OTA for Singapore today.

"Nevertheless, Hong Kong will maintain its Alert Response Level under the Preparedness and Response Plan for Zika virus infection and continue the current prevention and control strategy. People should also remain vigilant against Zika virus infection. The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health again reminds travellers to adopt anti-mosquito measures and practice safer sex. Pregnant women and women planning for pregnancy should not travel to Zika-affected areas. For those who travel, they should take measures to prevent mosquito bites and continue applying insect repellent containing DEET for 21 days after return to Hong Kong. The above measures and recommendations are in line with the WHO's latest recommendations."

(Source: The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region 22 November 2016)

 

 

Last revision date: 29 November 2016