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Travel Health News Digest (18 November 2014 - 24 November 2014)

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 01/01/2014 *

 

Cumulative reported no.
of cases since 01/01/2014

Source of information and date of report

Australia

1,320

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Brazil

574,612

World Health Organization, 6 November 2014

Cambodia

2,757

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Guangdong

Taiwan

44,696

12,964

Department of Health of Guangdong Province, 17 November 2014
CDC, ROC (Taiwan), 24 November 2014

India

21,772

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, India, 29 October 2014

Japan

322

National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Japan, 18 November 2014

Lao PDR

1,577

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Malaysia

84,682

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Mexico

95,252

World Health Organization, 6 November 2014

New Caledonia

316

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Philippines

67,781

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Singapore

17,210

Singapore National Environment Agency, 21 November 2014

Sri Lanka

38,751

Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka, 21 November 2014

Thailand

34,021

Ministry of Public Health, Thailand, 19 November 2014

Vietnam

21,381

World Health Organization, 4 November 2014

Remark:
* Dengue reporting systems vary by country.

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.

 

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: Middle East Respiratory Syndrome [Update]

The Department of Health (DH) is today (November 23) closely monitoring five additional cases (including two deaths) of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), and hence called on the public to stay alert and maintain good personal, food and environmental hygiene during travel. The aforementioned five cases, including two deaths, had already been included in the total numbers of cases and deaths in the MERS disease outbreak news of the WHO issued on 7 November. Therefore, globally, the total number of laboratory-confirmed MERS cases notified to the WHO remains 909, including at least 331 related deaths.

(Source: The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health 23 November 2014)

 

Pakistan: Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever

Health authorities in Pakistan confirmed on 20 November 2014 a new case of Congo-Crimean haemorrhagic fever in Sindh province.

(Source: ProMED-mail 22 November 2014)

 

Taiwan: Rubella

The Taiwan Centers for Disease Control has reported 6th rubella case in a 31-year-old male who resides in northern Taiwan. However, unlike the other 5 cases, this one was acquired in Taiwan.

(Source: ProMED-mail 22 November 2014)

 

Guinea: Ebola virus disease [Update]

Guinea has reported a cumulative total of 2,047 cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD), including 1,214 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 21 November 2014)

 

Sierra Leone: Ebola virus disease [Update]

Sierra Leone has reported a cumulative total of 6,190 cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD), including 1,267 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 21 November 2014)

 

Liberia: Ebola virus disease [Update]

The total number of Ebola virus disease (EVD) reported in Liberia is 7,082 including 2,963 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 21 November 2014)

 

Japan: Avian Influenza, poultry

Highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza virus was isolated in two fecal samples of wild bird in Chiba, Japan.

(Source: World Organisation for Animal Health 21 November 2014)

 

Mali: Ebola virus disease [Update]

As of today, Mali has officially reported a cumulative total of 6 cases of Ebola virus disease, with 5 deaths. Of the 6 cases, 5 are laboratory confirmed and one remains probable as no samples were available for testing.

(Source: World Health Organization 20 November 2014)

 

Madagascar: Bubonic plague

On 4 November 2014, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of Madagascar notified WHO of an outbreak of plague evolving in the country since the 31 August 2014. As of the 16 November 2014, a total of 119 cases and 40 deaths (CFR 34%) are reported in the country. Only 2% of reported cases are of the pneumonic form.

(Source: World Health Organization 20 November 2014)

 

Guinea: Ebola virus disease [Update]

Guinea has reported a cumulative total of 1,971 cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD), including 1,192 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 19 November 2014)

 

Sierra Leone: Ebola virus disease [Update]

Sierra Leone has reported a cumulative total of 6,073 cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD), including 1,250 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 19 November 2014)

 

Liberia: Ebola virus disease [Update]

The total number of Ebola virus disease (EVD) reported in Liberia is 7,069 including 2,964 deaths.

(Source: World Health Organization 19 November 2014)

 

Netherland: Avian Influenza, poultry

An outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza virus infection was reported in a hen farm of Hekendorp, Utrecht, Netherlands.

(Source: World Organisation for Animal Health 16 November 2014)

 

United Kingdom: Avian Influenza, poultry

An outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza virus infection was reported in a duck farm of Yorkshrie, England.

(Source: World Organisation for Animal Health 17 November 2014)

 

Mainland: Dengue Fever [Update]

As of 17 November a total of 44,696 cases of Dengue Fever had been recorded in Guangdong, Mainland this year. Guangzhou alone reported 37,062 cases. The numbers of cases in other places in Guangdong are as follows: Foshan 3,528 cases, Zhongshan 666 cases, Jiangmen 569 cases, Zhuhai 501 cases, Shenzhen 414 cases, Zhaoqing 273 cases, Qingyuan 286 cases, Dongguan 278 cases, Yangjiang 275 cases, Zhanjiang 224 cases, Shantou 221 cases, Chaozhou 128 cases, Maoming 92 cases, Jieyang 84 cases, Heyuan 26 cases, Huizhou 35 cases, Shaoguan 15 cases, Yunfu 11 cases and Shanwei 8 cases.

(Source: Department of Health of Guangdong Province 17 November 2014)

 

 

Last revision date: 24 November 2014