Travellers Reminded To Be Vigilant Against Polio

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Polio

Hong Kong Department of Health reminded members of the public planning to travel to polio-infected areas to be fully immunized against the infectious disease.

The reminder came after the receipt of notification from the Western Pacific Region Office of the World Health Organization (WHO) of a polio case in Australia involving a 22-year-old Pakistani student. The student had onset of illness on 22 June during his vacation in Pakistan and returned to Australia on July 2.

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A CHP spokesman said Hong Kong has in place a childhood immunisation programme covering vaccination against acute poliomyelitis. Parents should ensure their children have received up-to-date immunisation.

The spokesman said travelers to polio-infected areas should be fully immunised against poliomyelitis by one month prior to the date of travel.

The DH will alert the travel industry and issue letters to doctors to remind them to report any cases of Acute Flaccid Paralysis especially those with travel history to areas with polio.

According to WHO's criteria, 10 countries are currently considered as polio-infected areas, namely Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Chad, Somalia, Myanmar, Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Niger.

Members of the public may contact their family doctors or the Port Health's Travel Health Centres of DH at 2961 8840 or 2150 7235 during office hours for information on polio vaccination.

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