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[CDC News]Taiwan CDC collaborates with Watsons and backpacker Ace Chen to remind public to take precautions during summer travels

As many people are traveling abroad during the summer, the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control (Taiwan CDC) reminds the public to beware of infectious diseases to ensure a wonderful vacation. On July 17, Taiwan CDC held a press conference titled “Have fun and let’s go!” together with Watsons. In the press conference, Taiwan CDC shared about precautions to take before, during, and after the travel. Taiwan CDC also reminded travelers to obtain the latest information on epidemics at their destination prior to their trip. If suspected symptoms develop upon arrival in Taiwan or within 21 days of the return, the public is advised to voluntarily contact the quarantine officer at the airport, seek immediate medical attention and inform the physician of the recent travel history.

Ace Chen, an experienced backpacker, was invited to the press conference as a special guest. He talked about travel preparations based on his own experience of visiting about 50 countries. He also pointed out that travelers should always pay attention to their own health conditions to ensure a joyful vacation.

The director of Watsons’ department of product management, Lai Yi-Lung said that people’s health has always been Watsons’ top priority, and that’s why more than 570 Watsons stores across the nation provide professional health consultations. During this summer travel season, the public can also visit the stores for travel advice. In addition, in the following 3 months, precautions to ward off diseases will be posted on Watsons’ Facebook page, which has millions of followers, and also in Watsons’ advertising brochure. These are all measures to help people avoid diseases, and ensure they enjoy a delightful vacation.

Furthermore, to prevent epidemics overseas from harming people’s health, Taiwan CDC has established the Smart Quarantine Management System (SQMS). With the system, when a person with suspected symptoms arrives in Taiwan, quarantine officers at the airport can transmit data on the person’s health conditions to local health authority in real time. The public can then go online and voluntarily report their own health status after returning with cellphone, tablet and laptop, so that health authorities can track their health conditions.

Summer is the peak travel season for people in Taiwan. From July to September in 2018, about 3.5 million Taiwanese people traveled to Japan, China (including Hong Kong and Macau), South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, and other countries. Diseases Taiwanese people often contract overseas are dengue fever, acute hepatitis A, shigellosis, measles, amoebiasis and Legionnaires’ disease. Common sources of infection are Southeast Asian countries. Taiwan CDC reminds travelers to collect the latest information on infectious diseases at their destination before going abroad, visit travel clinics for related consultations, take precautions while traveling, and pay attention to their own health conditions. For more information, please visit the Taiwan CDC official website at https://www.cdc.gov.tw, or call the toll-free Communicable Disease Reporting and Consultation Hotline, 1922 (or 0800-001922).

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