Date
23 September 2017
Queen Mary Hospital has collected and sterilized all bed sheets and patient's clothes to contain the spread of mucormycosis (inset). Photos: HKEJ, internet
Queen Mary Hospital has collected and sterilized all bed sheets and patient's clothes to contain the spread of mucormycosis (inset). Photos: HKEJ, internet

Probe launched into fungal infections at Queen Mary Hospital

Hospital authorities have launched an investigation into the spread of mucormycosis, a form of fungal infection, at Queen Mary Hospital in Pok Fu Lam.

The hospital has reported five infections since the beginning of the year, including two over the past three weeks, Ming Pao Daily reported on Monday, citing the Hospital Authority.

As part of measures to contain the spread of the infection, authorities have ordered the collection and sterilization of all bed sheets and patient’s clothes used in the hospital.

As a fungal genus, mucor is commonly found in soil, digestive systems, plant surfaces, and rotten vegetable matter.

It is known to multiply fast in an environment of high temperature, high humidity and poor ventilation.

The infection could cause thrombosis (blood clotting) and damage human tissues.

Professor Yuen Kwok-yung, a microbiology expert at the University of Hong Kong, said an outbreak of mucormycosis led to the death of several patients in 2009, and the infection was traced to food products.

Ko Wing-man, Secretary for Food and Health, said Monday the Hospital Authority has set up a task force to investigate the case.

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