Asia's first case of swine flu has been detected in Hong Kong, the territory's Chief Executive, Donald Tsang told reporters after visiting the Infectious Disease Centre of the Princess Margaret Hospital Thursday afternoon.
Tsang said the patient is a Mexican citizen who travelled to Hong Kong from Shanghai and was staying at a hotel in the city's Wan Chai district. The test by both Hong Kong's Department of Health and the University of Hong Kong confirmed the diagnosis.
The patient has been isolated in a hospital and is in stable condition. The hotel has been quarantined with tourists barred from leaving, Tsang said.
In response to the news, a meeting of top government officials was held immediately after the case was detected.
As the virus continues to spread across the globe, we stand ready for the arrival of the first confirmed case of infection any time. We must strive for the best, and prepare for the worst, Tsang said at his speech to media.
We take pride in our team of highly professional healthcare workers. They served Hong Kong with great dedication and professionalism in the SARS outbreak in 2003. Now they are more experienced and better prepared to fight the new battle. I am sure all of us will stand by them as they take on this important, and high risk, task he added.
The World Health Organization also raised its tally of confirmed human cases to 331 from 257 on Friday, saying that 11 countries have now reported confirmed cases.