Ho Lap College

Information on the latest Situation of Outbreaks of Upper Respiratory Tract Infection released by the Centre for Health Protection 

Please pay attention to the following information about the latest Situation of Outbreaks of Upper Respiratory Tract Infection released by the Centre for Health Protection: 

The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health has recently received increased reports of institutional URTI outbreaks. A total of 38 URTI outbreaks affecting 254 persons were reported in recent two weeks (from 31 May to 13 June), compared to 1 URTI outbreak affecting 9 persons recorded in the previous two weeks (from 17 to 30 May). Majority of the outbreaks occurred in kindergartens/child care centres (56.4%), followed by primary schools (38.5%). The preliminary laboratory results of specimens collected from some affected children were detected with Rhinovirus. 

To prevent outbreaks of respiratory tract infection, schools should actively check the body temperature of all students every day when they arrive at school so as to identify students with fever. Staff should also check their temperature before work every day. Students and staff with fever or respiratory illnesses should not be allowed to attend school regardless of their RAT results. They should wear a mask and seek medical attention promptly. 

The following measures are advised to prevent upper respiratory tract infection: 

  • • Surgical mask can prevent transmission of respiratory viruses from ill persons. It is essential for persons who are symptomatic (even if having mild symptoms) to wear a surgical mask; 
  • • Wear a surgical mask when taking public transport or staying in crowded places. It is important to wear a mask properly, including performing hand hygiene before wearing and after removing a mask; 
  • • Avoid touching one’s eyes, mouth and nose; 
  • • Wash hands with liquid soap and water properly whenever possibly contaminated; 
  • • When hands are not visibly soiled, clean them with 70 to 80 per cent alcohol-based handrub as an effective alternative; 
  • • Cover the nose and mouth with tissue paper when sneezing or coughing. Dispose of soiled tissue paper properly into a lidded rubbish bin, and wash hands thoroughly afterwards; 
  • • Maintain good indoor ventilation; 
  • • When having respiratory symptoms, wear a surgical mask, refrain from work or attending class at school, avoid going to crowded places and seek medical advice promptly. 
  • • Maintain a balanced diet, exercise regularly, take adequate rest, do not smoke and avoid overstress. 

You may wish to refer the CHP’s guidelines on proper hand hygiene and proper use of mask, which are accessible at the CHP webpage https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/healthtopics/content/460/19728.html and https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/healthtopics/content/460/19731.html ; and video clips produced by the CHP on personal and environmental hygiene, which are available under “Video Demonstration” section of “Infection Control Corner” at the CHP website (https://www.chp.gov.hk/en/resources/346/index.html ).