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Published: 18:27, August 07, 2022 | Updated: 18:51, August 07, 2022
HK records 75 imported malaria cases since last month
By Wang Zhan
Published:18:27, August 07, 2022 Updated:18:51, August 07, 2022 By Wang Zhan

This undated photo shows the Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health, Hong Kong. (PHOTO / HKSAR GOVERNMENT)

HONG KONG - Hong Kong has recorded a total of 75 malaria patients from African countries since the last month, including 58 who are still being treated in public hospitals, health authorities said Sunday.

Lau Ka-hin, chief manager (quality and standards) of the Hospital Authority, said in news briefing they were also conducting tests for “two or three more” suspected cases that were detected on Saturday.

Sixty-five of the malaria patients arrived from Guinea while the remaining 10 were from other places in Africa

“They are still pending confirmation. They may have symptoms and have been hospitalized,” Lau said.

He said the 58 malaria patients included 56 males and two females. Besides the lone case in critical condition, two others were in serious condition.

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In a statement, the Centre for Health Protection said it recorded a total of 75 imported malaria patients aged 25 to 57 arriving in Hong Kong from July 1 to Aug 5. Sixty-five of them arrived from Guinea while the remaining 10 were from other places in Africa. Among them, two male patients aged 52 and 53 had passed away. 

“Since Aug 5, the CHP, together with the HA, conducted health screening at Hong Kong International Airport for those persons arriving in Hong Kong who have visited Guinea recently. Those who were suspected to have been infected with malaria and with clinical needs were immediately sent to hospital for treatment,” a CHP spokesman was quoted as saying in the statement.

“And for the others, the CHP will arrange them to stay in quarantine facility, so that the CHP and the HA can closely monitor and follow-up the conditions of these persons on a daily basis. Those who develop symptoms will be sent to public hospital for treatment," he added.

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The CHP said that those who were with the patients have also taken blood tests to make sure they were not infected. 

"Though the risk of local transmission of malaria is extremely low, members of the public should remain vigilance. There are effective drugs against malaria and Hong Kong has sufficient stock of the drugs but early diagnosis and prompt treatment are crucial for treating malaria,” the spokesman said. 

“As such, strict environmental hygiene, mosquito control and personal protective measures remain the most effective means against malaria both locally and during travel," he added.

The CHP pointed out that malaria is not transmitted from person to person but through an infected female Anopheline mosquito.

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According to the malaria vector surveillance information of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, the two types of Anopheline mosquitos in Hong Kong have not been found in urban areas of the city in recent years. 

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