The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) was notified by the Health and Family Planning Commission (HFPC) of Guangdong Province today (January 7) of an additional human case of avian influenza A(H7N9) affecting a man aged 31.
patient, who lives in Shenzhen, had onset of symptoms on December 30,
2013 and was admitted to a local hospital on January 3. His specimen
tested positive for avian influenza A(H7N9) virus by the relevant health
authority of Guangdong Province today. He had no recent history of
contact with poultry and is currently in stable condition. His
thirty-five close contacts in Shenzhen have been put under medical
surveillance with their specimens all tested negative for avian
influenza A(H7N9) virus by the relevant health authority of Guangdong
Investigation by Centre for Disease Control and
Prevention of Guangdong Province also revealed that the patient had
another close contact who is a four-year-old girl living in Hong Kong.
The girl and her 37-year-old mother travelled to Shenzhen between
December 26, 2013 and January 6, 2014. The girl had close contact with
that patient on December 30, 2013.
Upon receipt of the
notification from Guangdong HFPC, the CHP commenced contact tracing
immediately and located the duo today. Preliminary investigation by the
CHP showed that the girl has been asymptomatic all along while her
mother developed sore throat last night (January 6).
pair has been admitted to Princess Margaret Hospital for isolation and
their respiratory specimens will be taken for preliminary laboratory
testing by the Public Health Laboratory Services Branch of the CHP.
date, a total of 149 human cases of avian influenza A(H7N9) have been
confirmed in the Mainland. They are in Zhejiang (52 cases), Shanghai (34
cases), Jiangsu (28 cases), Guangdong (nine cases), Jiangxi (six
cases), Fujian (five cases), Anhui (four cases), Henan (four cases),
Beijing (two cases), Hunan (two cases), Shandong (two cases) and Hebei
The CHP will follow up with the Mainland health authorities for more case details.
enhanced disease surveillance, port health measures and health
education against avian influenza are ongoing. We will remain vigilant
and maintain liaison with the World Health Organization (WHO) and
relevant health authorities. Local surveillance activities will be
modified upon the WHO's recommendations," a spokesman for the DH said.
border control points (BCPs) have implemented disease prevention and
control measures. Thermal imaging systems are in place for body
temperature checks of inbound travellers. Suspected cases will be
immediately referred to public hospitals for follow-up investigation.
health education for travellers at BCPs, distribution of pamphlets,
display of posters in departure and arrival halls, in-flight public
announcements, environmental health inspection and provision of regular
updates to the travel industry via meetings and correspondence are all
"Travellers, especially those returning from
avian influenza A(H7N9)-affected areas and provinces, with fever or
respiratory symptoms should immediately wear masks, seek medical
attention and reveal their travel history to doctors. Health-care
professionals should pay special attention to patients who might have
had contact with poultry, birds or their droppings in affected areas and
provinces," the spokesman advised.
Members of the public should remain vigilant and take heed of the preventive advice against avian influenza below:
Do not visit live poultry markets. Avoid contact with poultry, birds
and their droppings. If contact has been made, thoroughly wash hands
* Poultry and eggs should be thoroughly cooked before eating;
Wash hands frequently with soap, especially before touching the mouth,
nose or eyes, handling food or eating; after going to the toilet or
touching public installations or equipment (including escalator
handrails, elevator control panels and door knobs); or when hands are
dirtied by respiratory secretions after coughing or sneezing;
* Cover the nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing, hold the spit with a tissue and put it into a covered dustbin;
* Avoid crowded places and contact with fever patients; and
* Wear masks when respiratory symptoms develop or when taking care of fever patients.