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Enterovirus has reached epidemic proportions in Taipei City. The Department of Health recommends frequent handwashing and not sending sick children to nursery or school

According to statistics from the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, the domestic enterovirus pandemic is still spreading. The most recent week (2024/5/5-2024/5/11) saw 1,214 people visit outpatient and emergency clinics for enterovirus, exceeding the pandemic threshold of 1,100. Furthermore, there was a 13.4% increase from the previous week (4/28-5/4). Taipei has not yet seen critical severe enterovirus infections or Enterovirus Type 71 cases. Enterovirus can infect people of all ages, but children under the age of five are more likely to develop severe infections. To prevent the spread of enterovirus, adults and children should wash their hands thoroughly, avoid going to school after becoming infected, and be aware of the warning signs of critical severe enterovirus infections.

According to monitoring data from the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan entered an enterovirus epidemic in mid-to-late April. On the 19th week (2024/5/5-2024/5/11), enterovirus-related outpatient and emergency clinic visits nationwide totaled 17,657 people, exceeding the pandemic threshold (11,000 people) and representing a 6.7% increase over the previous week (2024/4/28-2024/5/4). According to laboratory monitoring, coxsackie virus in 2024, A emerged as the main pandemic enterovirus; A71 and D68 viruses were also occasionally found, and those who were infected showed only mild symptoms. One case of coxsackie virus A10 infection had led to serious complications as of May 7, 2024.

In addition to continuing to monitor the enterovirus pandemic situation by the Taipei City Department of Health, because enterovirus is prone to spread in educational and nursery institutions, in 2024, 1,459 kindergartens and elementary schools have received guidance and inspection. The Taipei City Government issued an enterovirus pandemic alert from March 1 to June 30, and again from September 1 to December 31. During the pandemic alert period, child care centers, kindergartens, cram schools, and day care centers with more than two children (including two children) from the same class who have been diagnosed with enterovirus within the last seven days should suspend classes for seven days. From May 5 to 11, 117 classes were suspended due to enterovirus clustering cases in Taipei City, a 13.6% increase from 103 classes in the previous week.

Enterovirus infection can produce a variety of symptoms. Common enterovirus symptoms include a sore throat, rash (blisters) on the oral mucosa or extremities, and fever;herpangina symptoms which include blisters or ulcers on the isthmus. Blisters appear on the tongues, gums, palms, and soles of people with hand, foot, and mouth disease. If a young child has been diagnosed with enterovirus, their parents may give them water, juice, soup, or other liquid supplements. It is also recommended that food temperatures be reduced or that chilled foods (such as pudding) be given to alleviate pain caused by oral ulcers.

Enterovirus can infect both adults and children. Enteroviruses also come in a variety of forms. The Department of Health urges the public to practice proper hand hygiene and to keep the environment clean and disinfected. Alcohol does not disinfect enteroviruses; therefore, chlorine-containing bleach should be used when cleaning the environment. Use bleach with a 500ppm concentration (bleach : water=1:100) in the general environment to clean common items. Disinfect vomitus and excrement with 1,000ppm bleach (bleach : water=1:50).

The Department of Health, Taipei City Government reminds everyone that children under the age of five are at high risk of developing severe enterovirus infections. Furthermore, critical conditions escalate quickly. When infants or young children exhibit precursor symptoms of critical conditions, such as drowsiness, conscious disturbance, low energy levels, weakness or numbness in the hands and feet, myoclonus (startle or sudden muscle contraction throughout the body for no apparent reason), persistent vomiting, shortness of breath, or accelerated heartbeat, please rush them to one of the 14 dedicated hospitals for severe enterovirus infections for treatment (National Taiwan University Children’s Hospital, Cheng Hsin General Hospital, Tri-service General Hospital, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Shin Kong Wu Ho Su Memorial Hospital, Taipei Municipal Wanfang Hospital (Managed by Taipei Medical University), MacKay Children’s Hospital, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei Medical University Hospital, Taiwan Adventist Hospital, Taipei City Hospital (Jhonghsing Branch, Renai Branch, Heping Fuyou Branch and Yangming Branch).