Taiwan CDC urges people to avoid raw food and contaminated beverages to ward off typhoid fever 

Last week the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) announced one new imported case of typhoid fever in an over 20-year-old female who resides in northern Taiwan

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(photo courtesy of Taiwan CDC)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—Last week the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) announced one new imported case of typhoid fever in an over 20-year-old female who resides in northern Taiwan.

The case visited New Delhi, India on a business trip during March 8 and 27, Taiwan CDC said, adding that when she was in India, she developed symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea and fever, but she did not seek medical attention.

When she returned to Taiwan on March 28, she sought medical attention in the emergency department at a hospital, and on April 13, her infection with typhoid fever was laboratory confirmed, the agency said.

According to the epidemiological investigation, the case consumed raw fish and shrimp during her business trip to India, Taiwan CDC said. In addition, her friend who went on the same trip with her has also developed diarrhea.

The local health authority has arranged to collected specimen from the friend for testing, and other related contacts are being investigated, according to the agency.

According to Taiwan CDC’s surveillance data, thus far this year, as of April 17, a total of 5 typhoid fever cases, including 2 indigenous cases and 3 imported cases, have been confirmed in Taiwan. The imported cases respectively acquired infection in India (2) and the Philippines (1).

In the last three years (2015-207), a cumulative total of 12, 1 and 7 cases were respectively confirmed, among which, 8, 0 and 6 cases were respectively confirmed as imported cases, Taiwan CDC said. The majority of the imported cases (7) became infected in Indonesia, while the rest became infected in other neighboring countries in Asia, the agency added.

Typhoid fever is a gastrointestinal infectious disease. The incubation period is usually 8-14 days, but it can vary from 3 days to 1 month. Infection is most often acquired through consumption of water or food that has been contaminated by feces of an infected person or a carrier, according to Taiwan CDC.

Most commonly seen symptoms include persistent fever, headache, abdominal pain, diarrhea and cough, the agency said. To ward off infection, consume only thoroughly cooked food, avoid consuming raw food, consume only boiled or bottled water, practice good personal hygiene habits, and wash hands thoroughly with soap and water before meals and after using the bathroom, according to the agency.

Taiwan CDC recommends travelers planning to visit areas affected by typhoid fever to consider the need for typhoid fever vaccination through consulting the outpatient travel clinic at contracted hospitals in the nation prior to their trip.