United Christian Hospital confirms tuberculosis infection
The staff member is a nurse who works in the UCH Neonatal Intensive Care and Special Care Baby Unit. The nurse went to the general practitioner in Feb. 2015 because of intermittent coughing.
“Following the laboratory test result, the hospital has taken prompt infection control measures and investigated the incident,” the UCH spokesperson said. “Joint assessment made by microbiologists, respiratory medicine specialists and Department of Health experts in tuberculosis concluded that the risk of spreading infection is not high, taking into account that she had put on surgical mask while on duty, she took up a supervisory role and seldom had direct contact with patients and the fresh air ventilation in the ward is sufficient.”
After being diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection, the sputum test showed a positive result for Mycobacterium Tuberculosis on April 28, 2015.
“However, as a precautionary measure, the hospital has contacted the parents of 23 babies who had close contact with the staff,” the spokesperson said. “Also for safety concern, the hospital has contacted the parents of eight other babies who had not had close contact with the staff but with complicated medical conditions, mainly to explain the situation. The hospital also arranges a pediatrician to follow up and closely monitor the babies' health condition. So far, no patients from the concerned ward have reported any symptoms of tuberculosis.”
The staff member is currently on sick leave to receive treatment for the infection.
“UCH has reported the case to the Hospital Authority Head Office and the Center for Health Protection for necessary follow-up,” the spokesperson said. “Meanwhile, the hospital will enhance infection control measures and continue to closely monitor the health situation of newborns and staff of the ward.”