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Department of Health Community Health Partnership Communication The Second Issue of 2011 May to August From the Editor “Community Health Partnership Communica- Tips for a tion” has been published in a new look earlier Healthy Journey this year which promulgated health mes- sages to the districts with the support of our local partners. We will continue to prepare information on more health topics for commu- nication with the community. Stepping into early summer, many people start planning travel overseas during summer holidays. All travel carries some health risks which affect the quality of the trip. In this issue, we will share some travel health advices for those who are planning to travel or work overseas. With regard to communicable diseases, we will introduce dengue fever and community associated methicillin-resistant staphylococ- cus aureus (CA-MRSA). The theme of World Health Day 2011 promoted by World Health Organization was “Antimicrobial resistance and its global spread” calling for the public’s attention. As widely recognized by medical sector, CA-MRSA infections usually have special patterns of antibiotic resistance which may relate to the indiscriminate use of antibi- otics. This topic is certainly worth attention. To make accessing this publication more convenient, we have uploaded this publica- tion onto the websites of the Centre for Health Protection and the Department of Health (“Publications” corner). Also, you may down- load free health education resources on the topics concerned from the website or request copies from us for distribution at health promotion activities. Wishing you health and happiness. Community Liaison Division Department of Health If you have any enquiries or would like to liaise with us on related health promotion activities, please feel free to contact our Nursing Officer, Ms. Andrea Ma at 2125 2058. n For more informatio DH www.dh.gov.hk CHP www.chp.gov.hk CHEU www.cheu.gov.hk DH 24-Hour Hotline 2833 0111 Travel Health Be a Healthy Traveller International travel is ever increasing. The number of visits abroad by Hong Kong residents reached a historical figure of 84.4 million in 2010, with a growth of 16.8% since 2005. Among all the outbound journeys, 6.8 million were long distance travel via air transport to less familiar areas laden with a variety of health hazards, both infectious and non-infectious. Many outbound travellers experienced travel related health problems either during or after their journey. Although not all health problems can be prevented, most travel-related health risks can be effectively minimized by simple health measures taken by individuals before, during and after the journey. • • • Tips fo • • • • During the journey • Healt ra hy Jo urney • Before the journey • Keep good personal hygiene, wash hands • before eating and after going to toilet. Plan journey at least 4 to 6 Consume only thoroughly cooked food and boiled or • • bottled water. • weeks ahead to search for travel and health information. Avoid drinks prepared by ice of unknown origin. Avoid peeled fruits and vegetables not thoroughly cleaned. Check with a travel health While outdoors, wear long-sleeved clothing to cover the After return clinic for vaccination, arms and legs. preventive medication and other health measure Apply insect repellent to exposed skin. Choose one requirements. containing DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide). Seek medical advice early if Stay in air-conditioned rooms or use mosquito net. you have fever, rash, diarrhea Prepare a record of your medical problems and Beware of the dangers of casual sex. A single or vomiting, or feeling unwell. sufficient amount of exposure is sufficient to transmit the HIV virus Remember to tell doctor about and other sexually transmitted diseases. your travel itinerary. medications. Using condoms correctly provides some Complete the course of Prepare and train up protection from getting sexually transmitted yourself for high risk prophylactic medications as diseases. activities, for example, instructed. Traffic accidents are the leading cause skiing, diving, and of injury and death. Traveller should mountain hiking. remain vigilance about the state of Department of Health tyres, safety belts, lights, speed, Travel Health Service enquiry line Cover your journey roads and driving condition. with a travel insurance that Avoid night driving and 2150 7235 2961 8840 suits your journey overcrowded vehicles. arrangement. Respect local cultures, religions and regulations. Kowloon Hong Kong www.travelhealth.gov.hk For more informatio n DH www.dh.gov.hk CHP www.chp.gov.hk CHEU www.cheu.gov.hk DH 24-Hour Hotline 2833 0111 Dengue Fever D engue fever is an acute mosquito-borne infection caused by the dengue viruses. Immunity is gained against that serotype after recovery from its infection. However, no effective protection is conferred against subsequent This is found in tropical and infection by the other three serotypes. sub-tropical regions around the world e.g. Mode of transmission Southeast Asia. In 2010, a total of 83 cases were Dengue fever is transmitted to humans by the bites of notified to the Centre for Health Protection of which 79 female Aedes mosquitoes which are infected with a were imported. dengue virus. It cannot be spread directly from human Clinical features to human. In Hong Kong, the principal vector Aedes The dengue viruses encompass four different serotypes, aegypti is not found, but the prevailing species Aedes each of which can lead to dengue fever and dengue albopictus can also spread the disease. haemorrhagic fever. Dengue fever is clinically Management characterised by sudden onset of high fever, severe There is no specific medication for dengue fever or headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pains, dengue haemorrhagic fever. Dengue fever is mostly loss of appetite, nausea and rash. Young children may self-limiting. Symptomatic treatment is given to provide exhibit a milder non-specific febrile illness with rash. relief from fever and pain. Patients with dengue Dengue haemorrhagic fever is a severe and potentially haemorrhagic fever should be treated promptly with fatal complication of dengue fever. The incubation supportive management. The mainstay of the period ranges from 3 to 14 days. The features include treatment is to maintain the function of the circulatory high fever which lasts two to seven days, facial flush system. With appropriate and timely treatment, and other symptoms of dengue fever. Later, it may be mortality rate should be less than 1%. followed by the manifestation of bleeding tendency such as skin bruises, nose or gum bleeding, and possibly internal bleeding. In severe cases, it may progress to circulatory failure, shock and die. General Measures on Preventing Mosquito-borne Diseases Wear long-sleeved clothing and trousers, and apply mosquito repellent containing DEET to exposed parts of the body and clothes. Use mosquito screens or nets when the room is not air-conditioned. Place a mosquito coil or an electric repellent vaporizer near the window and door, to prevent mosquito entry. Prevent the accumulation of stagnant water - Put all used cans and bottles into covered dustbins. - Change water for plants at least once a week, leaving no water in the saucers underneath flower pots. - Cover tightly all water containers, wells and water storage tanks. - Keep all drains free from blockage. - Top up all defective ground surfaces to prevent the accumulation of stagnant water. At present, no effective vaccine for dengue fever is available. Therefore, the best preventive measure is to eliminate pockets of stagnant water that serve as sites of mosquito breeding, and to avoid mosquito bites. n For more informatio DH www.dh.gov.hk CHP www.chp.gov.hk CHEU www.cheu.gov.hk DH 24-Hour Hotline 2833 0111 Community Associated Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus S taphylococcus aureus is a bacterium commonly found on human skin and mucosa. About a third of normal healthy people may carry this bacterium in the procedures in the past 1 year prior to symptom onset. Symptoms nose or on skin without symptoms. Occasionally, this CA-MRSA commonly causes skin or soft tissue bacterium gets into the body and causes disease, such infections (pimples, boils or abscesses). Symptoms may as skin infection, wound infection, urinary tract include redness, warmth, swelling, skin tenderness or pus infection, pneumonia and infection of blood stream. drainage. Sometimes more serious effects such as purulent Most strains of Staphylococcus aureus are sensitive to wound infections and severe pneumonia may occur. many antibiotics and infections can be effectively treated. However, some strains are resistant to the Mode of transmission and management antibiotic methicillin (known as methicillin-resistant The infection is spread by direct contact with wounds, Staphylococcus aureus, MRSA) and they are usually discharge and soiled areas, usually via hands which resistant to other commonly used antibiotics. It is may then contaminate other body sites, items or widely recognised that indiscriminate use of surfaces. Risk factors include close body contact, antibiotics may contribute to antibiotic resistance. presence of openings in the skin and poor personal MRSA was first reported in the 1960’s, and is mainly hygiene. CA-MRSA infected skin lesions may require found in hospital settings. In the 1990’s, MRSA began incision and drainage. Antibiotic treatment may be to emerge in the community at large. necessary. Personal and hand hygiene are particularly important for individuals taking antibiotics for any Community associated- MRSA (CA-MRSA) reason, as loss of normal bacterial flora during infections is MRSA infections in healthy individuals this time predisposes even healthy who have not been hospitalised or stayed in other individuals to acquiring CA-MRSA. healthcare facilities or institutions, nor received medical Prevention Maintain good personal hygiene. Keep hands clean by washing thoroughly and frequently with liquid soap and water, or by rubbing them properly with alcohol handrub. Wear gloves whenever it is necessary to touch grossly soiled objects and wash hands thoroughly afterwards. This is especially important for those with weakened body resistance. Avoid sharing personal items, e.g. unlaundered towels, clothing and razors. Avoid direct contact with wounds or anything contaminated by wound secretions. Clean any broken skin immediately and cover properly with waterproof adhesive bandages. Wash hands before and after touching wounds. Consult a doctor promptly if symptoms of infections (e.g. swelling, redness, pain) develop. Avoid contact sports and visiting public bath houses if you have an open wound. Maintain environmental cleanliness and sterilize reused equipment in public places. Do not take antibiotics indiscriminately. Antibiotics should be prescribed by registered medical practitioners and the patient should complete the whole course of treatment according to the prescribed dosage and frequency. Observe strict hand hygiene and wear mask (for those with respiratory symptoms) if individuals are taking antibiotics. www.chp.gov.hk/files/pdf/antibiotics_pamphlet_eng.pdf www.chp.gov.hk/files/her/pamphlet_smart_use_of_antibiotics.pdf www.chp.gov.hk/files/her/CA-MRSA_20060113_en.pdf www.chp.gov.hk/files/her/hw_2587_010_en.pdf www.chp.gov.hk/files/her/df_eng_2110b_20061026.pdf For more informatio n DH www.dh.gov.hk CHP www.chp.gov.hk CHEU www.cheu.gov.hk DH 24-Hour Hotline 2833 0111 Department of Health Community Health Partnership Communication (The Second Issue of 2011 ~ May to August) <Readers’ Opinion Form> Your views are most valuable to us for improving the “Community Health Partnership Communication” and exploring more opportunities for collaboration. Please fill in this form and return it to the Community Liaison Division, Department of Health by fax at 2601 4209 or via this email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you. 1. What health topic(s) would you suggest for the next issue? (You may choose one or more options.) Communicable diseases, e.g. Health Promotion, e.g. Non-communicable diseases, e.g. Others: 2. What format would you like the “Community Health Partnership Communication” to take? Newsletter (as now) Poster Information paper Other format(s):___________________________ 3. Other opinions (e.g. opinions on this issue and ideas of district health promotion): 4. Health Partnership Communication Organization’s Name of organization : information Address : (Optional) Contact person : Telephone : Contact us If you have any enquiry or would like to liaise with us on health promotion activities, please feel free to contact our Nursing Officer, Ms. Andrea Ma at 2125 2058. ~ The End. Thank you again for your valuable opinions! ~ Note: The information provided in this opinion form will only be used by the Department of Health for the purpose of improving the “Community Health Partnership Communication”.
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