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Japanese encephalitis case probed

August 04, 2017

The Centre for Health Protection is investigating a local case of Japanese encephalitis involving a 59-year-old Tin Shui Wai man.


The Tin Shui (II) Estate resident, who has underlying illnesses, has come down with a fever, headache, neck stiffness and vomiting since July 30.


He attended Tin Shui Wai Hospital the next day and was transferred to Pok Oi Hospital. He is in stable condition.


He tested positive for Japanese encephalitis antibodies. He has no recent travel history and his local movements were mainly in Tin Shui Wai. His home contact is asymptomatic.


Centre for Health Protection Controller Dr Wong Ka-hing said the centre is working with the Food & Environmental Hygiene Department to contain the infection in the area.


He urged the public to avoid going to rural areas from dusk till dawn when the mosquito vector, which breeds in large water bodies such as rice paddies, is most active.


If fever and headache develop, especially quick onset of headache and high fever, people in the area should seek medical attention early.


Food & Environmental Hygiene Department Pest Control Officer-in-charge Lee Ming-wai said: "We have carried out a series of control measures in different areas within the Tin Shui Wai area including the housing estates, the village rural areas as well as the surrounding areas of pig farms.


"Pigs play a very important role in the transmission of JE (Japanese encephalitis) virus so mosquito preventive measures taken in pig farms play an important role in breaking the transmission cycle."


The centre's officers will conduct a site visit and questionnaire surveys at the patient's residence to find cases and arrange for blood tests.


A talk will be held at noon on August 7 in Tin Shui Wai Community Centre offering health advice to residents.


People with symptoms who have been in the vicinity of Tin Shui Estate should call the centre's hotline (2125 1122) for assistance.