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SFH on influenza

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Following is the transcript of remarks made by the Secretary for Food and Health, Dr Ko Wing-man, after attending the Legislative Council meeting this afternoon (February 4):

Reporter: (On the use of surgical masks for self-protection and the seriousness of seasonal influenza as compared to SARS.)

Secretary for Food and Health: Regarding your second question, I do not think there is a proper method for us to compare the two epidemics, which are essentially very different. For the use of surgical masks to prevent transmission of seasonal influenza, different opinions exist among our experts. For those who call on members of the public to use surgical masks to prevent seasonal influenza, their main consideration is that the social distancing effect is more important than the protective effect of the mask itself. More experts incline to advise people feeling unwell and those who are under the high-risk groups to wear a mask to protect themselves, particularly when they are in a crowded place.

Reporter: (On criticisms that the Hospital Authority is only prescribing Tamiflu but not other effective medicines such as Peramivir.)

Secretary for Food and Health: This is totally incorrect. Firstly, the Hospital Authority (HA) has stocked the injection-based new influenza medicine. Secondly, the HA has an expert committee which has worked out a guideline on the proper use of such medication.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Wednesday, February 4, 2015
Issued at HKT 16:47


12 Apr 2019