Date
21 August 2017
There has been an increase in the proportion of young children being admitted to hospital for flu, but not all cases are severe. Photo: HKEJ
There has been an increase in the proportion of young children being admitted to hospital for flu, but not all cases are severe. Photo: HKEJ

20% more children hospitalized for flu in HK

Three in every 10,000 children aged under five in Hong Kong were hospitalized for flu in the first week of this month, Sky Post reported Thursday, citing data from the Center for Health Protection.

That was up 20 percent from the last week of January. 

The admission rate for the elderly, on the other hand, fell to 3.76 in 10,000 from 5.46.

However, the rate for the elderly has remained at a level above those recorded in the past few years, the CHP said.

CHP director Leung Ting-hung was quoted as saying the flu outbreak is still at its peak and that community monitoring data shows more people are seeking treatment.

Pediatrician Hon Kam-lun said 60-70 percent of children admitted to the Prince of Wales Hospital had flu symptoms.

However, not all were severe cases, and most of them were discharged from hospital after one or two days.

Leung warned that the flu virus is expected to remain active for some time, especially as the Lunar New Year is approaching.

Hongkongers should pay more attention to their personal health and frequently wash their hands, he said.

As H7N9 avian flu cases have been reported recently in the mainland, Leung did not rule out the possibility that people could become infected with both the human flu and bird flu viruses.

He said residents of the city should avoid touching live birds or going to markets for live birds.

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KZ/AC/FL

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