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Epidemiol Infect. Aug 2004; 132(4): 727–736.
PMCID: PMC2870154

SARS preventive and risk behaviours of Hong Kong air travellers.


This study aims to investigate Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)-related behaviours of travellers returning to Hong Kong by air. A total of 820 travellers returning to Hong Kong by air were interviewed about their SARS-related behaviours in April 2003. Three quarters of the respondents wore a mask most/all of the time on board, 15% did so in public places at the travel destination. Perceived susceptibility to SARS at the destination predicted mask-wearing in public places and avoidance of crowded places, and perceived efficacy was a predictor for mask-wearing during flight. Approximately 16% of the respondents stated that they would delay their medical consultation for flu-like symptoms until returning to Hong Kong. Nearly 18.2% stated that they would not wear a mask in public places at the destination if they had flu-like symptoms. Education programmes, special services and effective thermal screening are required to minimize the chance of the spread of SARS by air travellers.

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