Further to our email on Precautionary Measures regarding Swine Influenza dated 27 April 2009, though there’s no confirmed human swine flu infection cases in Hong Kong thus far, a number of confirmed cases have been reported in Mexico, USA, Canada, Spain, UK, New Zealand and Israel. The World Health Organization (WHO) has raised the level of influenza pandemic alert from phase 4 to phase 5, indicating that there is human-to-human spread of the virus into at least two countries in one WHO region and is a strong signal that a pandemic is imminent. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government also strongly advised residents to avoid all non-essential travel to human swine-flu affected areas, particularly Mexico.
In light of the above development, the Company has decided that it is prudent to be vigilant and adopt the following measures with immediate effect.
I. Company Arrangement for Staff Traveling Outside Hong Kong
1. For all travels outside Hong Kong for business or personal reasons:
a) Before the travel outside Hong Kong
· Staff MUST declare using the attached form to the Human Resources Department via Department Head your places of visit
b) After return from the travel outside Hong Kong:
· Pay close attention to your health condition
· Wear a surgical mask for a continuous period of 7 days if returning from affected areas with confirmed cases of swine flu
· Measure your body temperature and declare your health condition by completing and returning to the Human Resources Department Part II of the Declaration Form.
· Continue your body temperature measurement for 7 days, record the measurement in the ‘Body Temperature Record Form’ and return the record to the Human Resources Department upon completion of the 7-day measurement.
· If you become sick with fever plus cough, sore throat or have difficulty breathing, consult the doctor immediately, do not return to work and inform your Department Head at once who should complete PART II of the Declaration Form on your behalf to report your health condition to the Human Resources Department.
2. All staff are strongly advised to avoid traveling to the affected areas. If traveling to such places is unavoidable and absolutely necessary, staff should take the following precautionary measures:
· Pay attention to announcements from the local governments.
· Follow local public health guidelines, including movement restrictions and prevention recommendations.
· Avoid close contact with people displaying flu like symptoms
· Wash hands frequently with soap and water or apply alcohol-based hand cleaners
· Avoid going to crowded places with poor ventilation
· Bring along surgical mask for use whenever appropriate
II. General Advice on Precautionary Measures for All Staff
1. You are reminded to stay alert and take the following precautionary measures:
· Have regular exercises, proper diet and adequate rest to build up good body immunity;
· Keep hands clean and wash hands properly. Alcohol-based hand rub is also effective when hands are not visibly soiled.
· Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
· Wash hands with liquid soap promptly if they are contaminated by respiratory tract secretions, e.g. after sneezing or coughing.
· Cover nose and mouth when sneezing or coughing.
· Always wrap nasal and mouth discharges with tissue paper, and dispose of the tissue paper properly in a lidded rubbish bin.
· Wear mask when symptoms of respiratory tract infection or fever develop. Seek medical advice promptly.
· All line managers are responsible for monitoring the general health condition of their team members. Staff found to have developed influenza-liked symptoms should be advised to seek medical attention and not to return to work.
2. You are also encouraged to watch out for the latest development in human swine influenza. Please visit the Government Webpage regularly for the latest announcements to the general public relating to human swine and other influenza.
· Human Swine Influenza
· Fact Sheet on Human Swine Influenza
· Affected areas/countries with confirmed human swine influenza
· Daily Update to Human Swine Influenza
· Press Releases
· Travel Health Advice
· How to prevent Influenza
For our Property Management and Hotel Staff, please take note of the control measures issued by your Department Heads.