14 Mar 2013

Hong Kong, Two cases of fever with travel history tested negative for novel coronavirus (NCoV) (March 14 2013)

[Source: Centre for Health Protection, Hong Kong PRC SAR, full text: (LINK).]

Two cases of fever with travel history tested negative for novel coronavirus

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) received today (March 14) a report from Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) and another one from Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital (PYNEH) on two suspected cases of severe respiratory disease associated with novel coronavirus.

In the first case, a 63-year-old man with good past health presented with fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, headache and myalgia on March 11 and attended the Accident and Emergency Department (AED) of PMH today. He is under isolation and treatment and his current condition is stable.

Preliminary investigations by the CHP revealed that the patient had travelled to Tunisia from March 1 to 8. He stayed in the airport of Qatar for about two hours, took transit on March 8 and returned to Hong Kong on March 9.

His chest X-ray was clear. Preliminary laboratory test results today for his respiratory specimens showed negative for Novel Coronavirus associated with Severe Respiratory Disease but positive for seasonal Influenza A (H3).

As regards the second case, a 23-year-old woman with good past health presented with fever, cough, runny nose and sore throat since March 10 and attended the AED of PYNEH today. She is under isolation and treatment and her current condition is stable.

Initial investigations by the CHP revealed that the patient travelled to Turkey, Abu Dhabi, Dubai from February 27 to March 12 and returned to Hong Kong on March 12.

Her chest X-ray was clear. Preliminary laboratory test results today for her respiratory specimens showed negative for Novel Coronavirus associated with Severe Respiratory Disease.

"The CHP will continue its surveillance mechanism with public and private hospitals, practising doctors and the airport for any suspected cases of severe respiratory disease associated with novel coronavirus," a DH spokesman remarked.

"No human infection with this virus has been identified so far in Hong Kong," the spokesman stressed.

"We would like to reassure the public that the Government will be as transparent as possible in the dissemination of information on cases of Severe Respiratory Disease associated with Novel Coronavirus. Whenever there is a suspected case, particularly involving patients with travel history to the Middle East and the affected areas, the CHP will release information to the public as soon as possible," the spokesman reiterated.

Travellers returning from novel coronavirus-affected countries with respiratory symptoms are advised to wear face masks, seek medical attention and reveal their travel history to doctors.

The spokesman reminded members of the public to take heed of personal hygiene:

  • Wash hands before touching the eyes, nose and mouth;
  • Wash hands before eating or handling food;
  • Wash hands after using a toilet;
  • Wash hands after sneezing or coughing and cleaning the nose; and
  • Avoid direct contact with animals, birds or poultry.

The public may visit the CHP's website (www.chp.gov.hk/en/content/9/460/19899.html ) for more information on personal hygiene.

Ends/Thursday, March 14, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:50
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