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12 May 2013

Hong Kong, Fever patient with travel history tested negative for novel coronavirus (May 12 2013)

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

Fever patient with travel history tested negative for novel coronavirus

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) received notification from Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) today (May 12) of a suspected case of severe respiratory disease associated with novel coronavirus affecting a 27-year-old man. His respiratory specimen tested negative for the virus.

The patient, who presented with fever, took transit via Doha and arrived in Hong Kong last night. He was subsequently sent to the Accident and Emergency Department of the QEH and is currently admitted in the isolation ward.

His chest X-ray was clear. He has been in a stable condition all along.

Preliminary laboratory testing of the patient's nasopharyngeal swab by the Public Health Laboratory Services Branch of the CHP yielded 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 said.

"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 said.

Travellers returning from novel coronavirus-affected areas 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 the toilet;
  • Wash hands after sneezing or coughing and cleaning the nose; and
  • Avoid direct contact with animals, birds or poultry.

Members of the public may visit the CHP's website ( for more information on personal hygiene.

Ends/Sunday, May 12, 2013
Issued at HKT 17:39