Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Hong Kong & Taiwan Take Notice Of Unidentified Pneumonia Outbreak In Wuhan

Wuhan pneumonia prevention and promotion - Credit Taiwan CDC


Just before 6pm local time (5am EST), Hong Kong's CHP posted a statement on the story we've been following for the past few hours (see here and here) ; an outbreak of an - as yet - unidentified viral pneumonia in Wuhan, China.
We seem to be in echo chamber mode, as each statement adds little we hadn't heard before.
For now, there is very little solid information, beyond the fact that more than 2 dozen cases are hospitalized in Wuhan, and no cause has been identified.  We've two translated statements - the first from Hong Kong's CHP , followed by one from Taiwan's CDC.

CHP closely monitors cases of Mainland pneumonia cases
  The Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health is closely monitoring the pneumonia cases in Wuhan, Hubei Province today (December 31), and has contacted the National Health and Health Commission for further information.
  According to the Hubei Provincial Health and Health Committee's announcement, Wuhan has recently confirmed multiple cases of pneumonia related to a local seafood market, "South China Seafood City." The Wuhan Municipal Health and Health Committee has launched an investigation. Currently, 27 cases have been found, of which seven are in serious condition and the rest are stable. The symptoms of the case were mainly fever, and a few patients had difficulty breathing. At present, all patients have been treated in isolation, and follow-up investigations and medical observations of close contacts are ongoing.
  According to the announcement of Wuhan Municipal Health and Health Committee, relevant experts analyzed that the above cases were viral pneumonia. So far, the investigation has not found any obvious human-to-human transmission or infection by medical personnel. Detection of the pathogen and investigation of the cause of the infection are still ongoing.
  Locally, the CHP has developed a series of measures to monitor and control infectious diseases, and will remain vigilant, working closely with the World Health Organization and relevant health departments to monitor the latest developments.
  The Port Health Section of the Center for Health Protection has been implementing health monitoring measures at various entry and exit ports, and has infrared cameras to monitor the temperature of immigrants. If a case of suspected severe infectious disease is found, it will be immediately referred to a public hospital for isolation and follow-up. The Center for Health Protection has notified the Hospital Administration of the pneumonia case group in Wuhan.
  The CHP reminds passengers that if they have respiratory symptoms, they should wear a mask and seek medical advice, and report their travel history to the doctor. The Center for Health Protection will continue to closely monitor the latest situation of Wuhan pneumonia cases, and update monitoring guidelines and testing strategies in accordance with the situation.
  To prevent pneumonia and respiratory infections, citizens must always maintain good personal and environmental hygiene, including:
  • Always keep your hands clean, especially before touching your mouth, nose, or eyes; after touching public facilities such as handrails or door handles; or when your hands are contaminated with respiratory secretions, such as after coughing or sneezing.
  • When washing your hands, clean your hands with soap and water, rub your hands for at least 20 seconds, rinse with water and dry with a tissue or a cell phone. If there is no hand-washing facility or there is no obvious dirt on the hands, it is also effective to clean the hands with 70 to 80% alcohol hand rub.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with paper towels when sneezing or coughing. Dispose of used paper towels in a covered dustbin, then clean your hands thoroughly.
  • When symptoms of respiratory tract infection occur, surgical masks should be worn instead of going to work or school. Avoid going to crowded places and seeing a doctor as soon as possible.
  Citizens should pay attention to the following precautions when traveling abroad:
  • Avoid contact with birds or their dung, and go to wet goods markets, live poultry markets or farms.
  • Avoid close contact with patients, especially those with symptoms of acute respiratory infections.
  • Pay attention to food safety and hygiene, and avoid eating or drinking raw or undercooked animal products, including milk, eggs, and meat, or foods that may be contaminated with animal secretions, excreta (such as urine), or products, unless Cook, wash or peel properly.
  • When you are out of the country, if you are unwell, especially if you have a fever or cough, you should wear a surgical mask, immediately notify the hotel staff or tour leader, and seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
  • If you have a fever or other symptoms after returning to Hong Kong from a foreign country, you should consult a doctor immediately, tell the doctor where you have recently visited, and wear surgical masks to prevent infection.
/ Tuesday, December 31, 2019
17:55 Hong Kong time

And this from Taiwan's CDC:

In response to the outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan, Mainland China, the CDC has continued to implement border quarantine and boarding quarantine for Wuhan inbound flights

Release Date: 2019-12-31
Regarding a number of cases of pneumonia reported in Wuhan, Mainland China, the CDC has confirmed the epidemic information to the Mainland China Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization (WHO) IHR window today (31). In the evening, Lu Fang sent experts to Wuhan in response. Conducted pathogen detection and investigation of the cause of infection, and provided information released by the Wuhan Municipal Health and Health Committee on December 31, stating that 27 cases of pneumonia were recently discovered in the local area and 7 cases were critically ill. 
All of them have been treated in isolation and 2 cases have improved. The clinical manifestations are mainly fever, a few patients have difficulty breathing, and have bilateral lung infiltrative lesions. Most of the cases were operated by South China Seafood City, Jianghan District, Wuhan City. No obvious human-to-human transmission and medical staff infection have been found. Lu indicated that if there is further information, he will inform us in time.
In response to the epidemic of pneumonia in Wuhan, Mainland China, in order to prevent cases from moving abroad, China has initiated contingency measures for border quarantine in accordance with standard operating procedures, strengthened fever screening for inbound tourists, implemented travel history, occupation type, contact history of suspected cases, Inquiries about the gathering situation, health assessment and health education, the assessment of the epidemic can be effectively prevented from overseas, but for the sake of prudence, boarding and quarantine will be carried out for flights departing directly from Wuhan, Mainland China, except for proactive assessment of passenger health In addition to this situation, relevant preventive measures were also introduced to passengers on the flight.
The Department of Disease Control will continue to monitor the epidemic situation in Wuhan, Mainland China, and adjust the prevention and control according to the epidemic situation. As the local epidemic situation is not yet clear, the public is urged to receive information on unknown or unproven epidemic situations. Do not distribute or repost it at will. Article 63 of the Law on the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases stipulates that the spread of rumors or false information about the epidemic situation of infectious diseases, which is caused to the public or others in full, is subject to a fine of up to NT $ 3 million; and in accordance with the Law on the Maintenance of Social Order Article 63, paragraph 5, provides that those who spread rumors enough to affect public peace may be detained for less than three days or fined less than NT $ 30,000.
The Department of Disease Control stated that in addition to the flu epidemic season, winter is also a period of pneumonia. It reminds the public to take good personal hand hygiene and cough etiquette, and try to avoid crowded and airless public places. People in the Wuhan area of ​​mainland China who have fever or acute respiratory symptoms within 10 days of returning to China should take the initiative to report the 1922 epidemic prevention line and wear a mask to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. When seeking medical treatment, please actively inform the history of tourism activities, timely diagnosis notification and obtain a complete Medical care.