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Public reminded to be vigilant against influenza

Public reminded to be vigilant against influenza
The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (July 17) called on members of the public and management of institutions to maintain strict personal and environmental hygiene to prevent influenza.

The appeal was made following CHP's investigation into an outbreak of Influenza A affecting three elderly women in a ward in Precious Blood Hospital (Caritas).

The affected, aged from 81 to 87, developed fever and respiratory symptoms between July 14 and 16.

One of them was transferred to Princess Margaret Hospital while two others to Caritas Medical Centre. They are all in stable condition.

Laboratory investigations showed the samples taken from their respiratory tracts all yielded positive results for influenza A.

Staff of the CHP has advised the hospital to suspend admission and discharge of patients from the affected ward. Restricted visiting policy has also been implemented.

Patients' relatives have been duly informed of the case by the hospital. Infection control measures have been stepped up in wards. Patients and healthcare staff are under close surveillance.

To prevent influenza, the public are advised to adopt the following measures:
  • To build up good body immunity by having a proper diet, regular exercise and adequate rest, reducing stress and avoiding smoking;
  • To maintain good personal hygiene, and wash hands after sneezing, coughing and wear a mask when developing symptoms of respiratory infections;
  • To maintain good ventilation; and
  • To avoid visiting crowded places with poor ventilation, especially during peak influenza season.
Members of the public, particularly children, elderly people and those with chronic diseases, should wear face masks and consult their doctors for medical advice promptly if they develop symptoms of respiratory tract infection.

For more information on the disease, members of the public may visit the CHP's website (

End/Tuesday, 17 July 2007