CHP advises shut down at Hong Kong college to control HFMD outbreak

Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection of the Department of Health advised QualiEd College on October 15 to stop classes for two weeks to help control an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease.

Twenty students at the QualiEd College, Tseung Kwan O, were affected by the outbreak. Twelve men and six women from the school have contracted HFMD, causing oral ulcers, rashes and vesicles on their feet and hands, beginning on September 24.

The suspension will apply to six classes to help control the outbreak. Of the 20 students affected, 16 sought medical attention and one required hospitalized; that person was discharged on October 8. All of the students affected by the outbreak were reported to be in a stable condition.

Laboratory testing of stool samples by the CHP Public Health Laboratory Service Branch found two students tested positive for Enterovirus 71.

The CHP has regularly monitored the school after the first notice of infection. After QualiEd College implemented a method to control the outbreak, two new cases of HFMD were reported. It was at this time the CHP recommended suspending the classes.

The school is under medical surveillance in an attempt to control the outbreak. HFMD is a common disease in child populations. The CHP recommends proper hygiene to help combat the potential spread of the illness.