Travel Health Service Year 2019

Travel Health News

Current Travel Health News

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 01/01/2019 *

 

Cumulative reported no.
of cases since 01/01/2019

Source of information and date of report

Australia

1,002

World Health Organization, 12 September 2019

Brazil

1,993,271

World Health Organization, 26 September 2019

Guangdong, China

2,005

Health Commission of Guangdong Province, 11 September 2019

India

5,504

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, India, 26 May 2019

Japan

311^

National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan, 24 September 2019

Lao PDR

27,904

World Health Organization, 12 Sepember 2019

Malaysia

90,936

World Health Organization, 12 September 2019

Mexico

100,510

World Health Organization, 26 September 2019

The Philippines

249,332

World Health Organization, 12 September 2019

Singapore

12,292@

Singapore National Environment Agency, 26 September 2019

Sri Lanka

49,292

Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka, 26 September 2019

Taiwan, China

481

CDC, ROC (Taiwan), 26 September 2019

Thailand

93,007

Ministry of Public Health, Thailand, 24 September 2019

Vietnam

124,751

World Health Organization, 12 September 2019

* Dengue reporting systems vary by country/area.
@Cumulative cases since 30 December 2018.
^ Cumulative cases since 31 December 2018.



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.


Democratic Republic of the Congo: Measles [Update]

30 September 2019

Measles activity in Democratic Republic of the Congo remains high. 183,837 cases have been reported this year, including 3,667 deaths. For more information on measles, please visit the Centre for Health Protection’s thematic webpage: https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/features/100419.html

(Source: Outbreak News Today 29 September 2019)

 

Malaysia: Dengue fever [Update]

30 September 2019

Malaysia is seeing dengue fever on rising trend this year. 100,803 cases have been recorded this year, over half of which are from Selangor State, followed by Kuala Lumpur and Johor State. 143 deaths have been recorded.

(Source: Outbreak News Today 29 September 2019)

 

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Ebola Virus Disease [Update]

30 September 2019

The Ebola continues. The total number of cases has reached 3,183 and the total number of deaths is 2,126. The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak as a public health emergency of international concern on 17 July 2019. For more information on Ebola virus disease, please visit the Centre for Health Protection’s thematic webpage: https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/features/34199.html

 

Southeast Asia: Dengue Fever [Update]

30 September 2019

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health reported the latest number of dengue fever (DF) cases, and strongly urged the public to maintain strict environmental hygiene, mosquito control and personal protective measures both locally and during travel.

From September 20 to 26, the CHP recorded two imported DF cases. The patients had been to the Philippines (one case) and Thailand (one case) during the incubation period.

As of September 26, 153 cases had been recorded this year, as compared with 109 cases recorded in the same period last year. All the cases recorded in 2019 were imported, mainly from Thailand (31), Malaysia (24) and Cambodia (20).

The CHP has been closely monitoring the latest DF situation in neighbouring and overseas areas. DF is endemic in many tropical and subtropical areas of the world. According to the World Health Organization, some Asian countries are experiencing unusually high numbers of DF cases for this time of year. The number of cases in several countries including Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Vietnam was about two to six times the number for the same period in 2018.

According to the Health Commission of Guangdong Province, Guangdong is still in the epidemic season of DF. In Taiwan, as of September 26, 481 cases (including 86 local cases) have been recorded in 2019.

Detailed information on the latest DF situation in Hong Kong as well as neighbouring and overseas countries and areas this year has been uploaded to the CHP's website (www.chp.gov.hk/files/pdf/df_imported_cases_and_overseas_figures_eng.pdf). Members of the public should stay vigilant and carry out effective mosquito prevention and control measures.

 

Saudi Arabia: Middle East Respiratory Syndrome [Update]

30 September 2019

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is closely monitoring six additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by Saudi Arabia from August 1 to 31. The CHP again urged the public to pay special attention to safety during travel, taking due consideration of the health risks in the places they visit.

According to the WHO, of the additional cases, four were male patients and two were female patients, with ages from 49 to 71. Among them, three had exposure to camels and consumed camel milk, and one had contact with a previously confirmed patient. Four had underlying illnesses and one has passed away.

According to the latest information, 2,464 cases have been reported to the WHO (with 850 deaths), including 2 245 in 10 Middle East countries comprising 2,073 in Saudi Arabia, 87 in the United Arab Emirates, 28 in Jordan, 24 in Oman, 19 in Qatar, six in Iran, four in Kuwait, two in Lebanon, and one each in Yemen and Bahrain.

For more information on Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, please visit the Centre for Health Protection’s thematic webpage: https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/features/26511.html

 

Bangladesh: West Nile Virus Infection

27 September 2019

A human case of West Nile virus infection was reported for the first time in Bangladesh. Detailed information has not been available yet as the government’s concerned department has not investigated to know its origin.

(Source: Outbreak News Today 26 September 2019)

 

The Philippines: Diphtheria

26 September 2019

The Philippines reports an increase in diphtheria in 2019. From January 2019 to September 2019, there have been 167 cases and 40 deaths compared to 122 cases and 30 deaths cases in the same period in 2018. Parents are urged to ensure that their children receive all the necessary vaccinations on a timely basis.

(Source: Outbreak News Today 25 September 2019)

 

USA: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

26 September 2019

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the US, more than 20 human cases of Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), a significant increase over average incidence of 7 cases a year, have occurred this year in Massachusetts, Michigan, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, and North Carolina. The CDC says the best way to avoid EEE is to avoid mosquito bites.

(Source: ProMED-mail 24 September 2019)

 

Thailand: Chikungunya fever [Update]

25 September 2019

Thailand health officials reported continuous Chikungunya fever outbreak activity, especially in southern provinces of Pattani, Ranong, Phuket, Tak and Songkhla. As of 23 September, 7,704 cases have been reported this year.

(Source: Outbreak News Today 24 September 2019)

 

Ethiopia: Chikungunya fever

25 September 2019

An outbreak of Chikungunya fever has been reported in Dire-Dawa, Ethiopia since late July this year. As of 15 September, 40,340 cases have been reported.

(Source: Outbreak News Today 24 September 2019)

 

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Ebola Virus Disease [Update]

25 September 2019

The Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of the Congo continues. The total number of cases has reached 3,171 and the total number of deaths is 2,118. The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak as a public health emergency of international concern on 17 July 2019. For more information on Ebola virus disease, please visit the Centre for Health Protection’s thematic webpage: https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/features/34199.html