Table of Contents

HK J Paediatr (New Series)
Vol 11. No. 3, 2006

HK J Paediatr (New Series) 2006;11:177-178


Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology

YL Lau

The last issue of our Journal dedicated to Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology is in 2003, for which I also wrote an Editorial.1 Since 2003, Hong Kong and the rest of the world have gone through SARS and are still facing the possibility of pandemic influenza. The Government has established the Centre for Health Protection in response to the continuing threats of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases. Paediatricians have also inaugurated the Hong Kong Society for Paediatric Immunology and Infectious Diseases, with the vision of organising our efforts better in meeting the future challenges.

A review of the services in Paediatric Immunology and Infectious Diseases in Hong Kong has just been conducted by an external consultant Professor Andrew Cant from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. We hope a consolidated network of paediatricians with an interest in infectious diseases and immunology will empower us in the provision of care and prevention of such diseases. A possible model for such a network could comprise designated paediatricians with an interest in infectious diseases and immunology in the various paediatric units forming a tightly-connected functional entity, providing not only clinical care for such patients, but also be responsible for infection control, surveillance of emerging infectious diseases, and performing territory-wide surveys of various infectious and immunological diseases so as to provide quality disease burden data for policy decision. These paediatricians will form a functional interface between Hospital Authority and Centre for Health Protection during outbreaks of infectious diseases. Moreover they can be charged with the responsibility of maintaining registries of patients with special needs in order to ensure quality care and assurance. These patient groups may include: HIV-infected children as well as anti-retroviral exposed but not HIV-infected children born of HIV-infected mothers; children treated with novel immunological therapies such as interferon-α, interferon-γ, etanercept, infliximab, rituximab; children with primary immunodeficiencies; children who require transplantation for their immunodeficiencies or rheumatological diseases; allergic children who require Epipen for their life-threatening anaphylaxis. Through collaboration, this group of paediatricians can help achieve dreams beyond the present limitations. However this needs policy support as well as mutual trust at all levels.

The articles in this issue are wide-ranging and serve to remind us that there are many children with different infectious and immunological diseases who deserve our best effort to help them. As mentioned in my last Editorial in 2003, how to ensure the development and sustainability of Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology as a subspecialty is critical for providing the optimal care for these children.

YL Lau
Guest Editor


1. Lau YL. Editorial on paediatric infectious diseases and immunology. HK J Paediatr (new series) 2003;8:1-2.


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