MOH issues health advisory for H7N9

The Ministry of Health has advised all travellers returning from areas in China affected by the H7N9 bird flu strain to look out for symptoms of respiratory illness, such as fever and cough.

The ministry said in a press release on Saturday that travellers who have gone to Shanghai, Anhui, Jiangsu and Zhejiang should seek early medical attention if they are ill with such symptoms and doctors of their travel history.

China has reported 16 cases of human infections with H7N9, including six deaths, in Shanghai, Anhui, Jiangsu and Zhejiang. Travellers to the affected areas in China should continue to remain vigilant and observe measures recommended by the local health authorities, including:

-Avoid direct contact with poultry, birds or their droppings and if contact is made wash hands thoroughly with soap and water;

- Cook poultry and eggs thoroughly before eating

-Wash hands frequently with soap and water (e.g. before handling food or eating, after going to toilet, or when hands are dirtied by respiratory secretion after coughing or sneezing)

- Avoid crowded places and contact with sick people with fever

-Wear a mask when you have respiratory symptoms or are feeling unwell.

The Health Ministry is in close contact with the World Health Organisation and other overseas counterparts and is monitoring the situation closely.

It will also update the public immediately, should there be any new developments.

More information on H7N9 is available at, or through the ministry's hotline 1800-2254122.