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About HKCFP > President’s Message

October 2021

After a recent period of no local cases of COVID-19, the recent finding of a resurgence of positive cases with mutant strains served as a warning that we cannot be complacent towards the pandemic. Mr. Patrick Nip, the Secretary for the Civil Service, encouraged the elderly people to learn about the importance of receiving a COVID-19 vaccination and get vaccinated as early as possible to protect themselves. (Please Click) He reminded all that there is an immediate need to build a protective shield in the community and that people, especially elderly persons, who have yet to receive the vaccination should get vaccinated as soon as possible to protect themselves, as vaccination can help reduce the risk of serious morbidity and mortality from COVID-19 infection per recommendations by the experts. Please continue to help educate the public, and the elderly people in particular, about the urgent need for receiving the vaccination.

October is the breast awareness month. According to the Hong Kong Cancer Registry 2020 (using 2018 data), 1 in 14 women in Hong Kong are at risk of developing breast cancer by the age of 75.

Based on the recently revised recommendations of the Cancer Expert Working Group on Cancer Prevention and Screening (CEWG) (of which I am a member) of the Cancer Coordinating Committee (of which I am a member), the Government would adopt a risk based approach for breast cancer screening and had rolled out a Breast Cancer Screening Pilot Programme since September 2021 for eligible women over a period of two years, aiming at early detection of breast cancer in asymptomatic women so that treatment can be commenced early. (Please Click) According to the latest CEWG's recommendations, women aged between 44 and 69 with certain combinations of personalised risk factors putting them at increased risk of breast cancer are recommended to consider mammography (MMG) screening every two years. The breast cancer risk assessment tools developed by University of Hong Kong are accessible at the Cancer Online Resource Hub: (Please Click). More details of the pilot programmes are available at: (Pleae Click). Family doctors in the community are in an advantageous position to advise and support those in need. 

The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) has completed a Department of Health commissioned survey on Iodine, assessing the iodine status among school-aged children, pregnant women and lactating mothers in Hong Kong. Recently, I participated in the Working Group on Prevention of Iodine Deficiency Disorders set up by Department of Health and Centre for Food Safety (CFS), Food and Environmental Hygiene Department, with representatives from the Hospital Authority and other relevant Colleges. After reviewing the latest scientific evidence, including the key findings of the survey, the Working Group has made the following recommendations (Please Click) : (A), Health education on iodine intake among pregnant and lactating women should be strengthened; (B), Joint recommendation for iodine intake for pregnant and lactating women should be made in collaboration with relevant parties. Key messages include (i) taking iodinecontaining supplement at least 150ug iodine per day, (ii) consuming food with more iodine as part of a healthy balanced diet, and (iii) using iodised salt; and (C), Based on findings of adequate iodine intake among school aged children, mandatory salt iodisation programme is not warranted in local situation at present. For more details, please refer to the following link. (Please Click)

The 9th Global Conference of the Alliance for Healthy Cities is going to be held in Hong Kong from 3 - 5 November, 2021. (Please Click) This conference aims at providing opportunities to facilitate sharing of wisdom and ideas while fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic, building collaboration platforms and strengthening local and international networking, and allowing participants to look beyond COVID-19. The Conference programme is comprised of themes including Development of Smarter Healthy Cities, Risk Communications in Emergencies, Mental Health Under and Beyond COVID-19, and Age-Friendly Communities Beyond COVID-19, which are highly relevant to our local situations in Hong Kong. Our College has also participated as a supporting organisation. Please make your registrations early at the Conference website to receive the early bird discounts.

Please keep well and stay safe.

Dr. David V K CHAO