Taiwan issues yellow travel alert for Shanghai after newest case of H7N9
January 5, 2014, 12:02 am TWN
TAIPEI--Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) yesterday issued a yellow travel alert for Shanghai, a day after the Chinese city confirmed a new human H7N9 avian influenza case.
The MAC upgraded its epidemic travel advisory for Shanghai to a level-2 alert, the same level set last year for travel to Guangdong, Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces after those areas reported confirmed cases of H7N9 avian influenza.
It also urged people to pay special attention to their health and safety if traveling to the city cannot be avoided.
The new H7N9 case in Shanghai involving an 86-year-old man brought the total number of confirmed H7N9 cases in China to 13 since October, including five cases in Zhejiang, five in Guangdong, two in Hong Kong and one in Shanghai, Taiwan's Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported Saturday.
Since March 31, 2013, mainland China and Hong Kong have reported 147 confirmed human H7N9 cases, including 48 in which the patients eventually died, the CDC said.
Taiwan has confirmed two imported human cases of H7N9 avian influenza, with one involving a Taiwanese businessman who fell ill after returning from a trip to Jiangsu province in April 2013 and made a full recovery after a month of intensive treatment.
The second one involved an 86-year-old Chinese tourist who arrived in Taipei on Dec. 17, 2013, and was hospitalized on Dec. 24, according to the CDC.
The MAC asked Taiwanese citizens to pay special attention to travel safety if heading to China and reconsider their travel plans, warning that the H7N9 virus could spread to Southern China.
The MAC also urged people who have to travel to epidemic areas in China to avoid direct contact with birds or poultry, wash their hands frequently, wear a surgical mask, not feed wild birds including pigeons and not eat uncooked meat and eggs.
If travelers to epidemic areas develop a fever and cough, they should promptly see a doctor after returning to Taiwan, the council warned.