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Hong Kong – Health Issues

Hong Kong is a bustling city of over 7 million people located on the southern coast of China. Despite its small size, it is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. The healthcare system in Hong Kong is well developed and offers a high standard of care, but like any other city, there are still some common health issues that affect the population. In this article, we will discuss some of the common health issues in Hong Kong and explore smoking habits and legislation in the city.

Common Health Issues in Hong Kong

Respiratory Diseases

Hong Kong is known for its air pollution, which is a major contributor to respiratory diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). According to the Hong Kong Asthma Society, around 500,000 people in Hong Kong suffer from asthma, which is roughly 7% of the population. COPD is also a significant health issue in Hong Kong, with an estimated prevalence of 4.9% among adults aged 40 or above.

Mental Health

Mental health is another significant health issue in Hong Kong, with high levels of stress, anxiety, and depression reported among the population. The fast-paced lifestyle, long working hours, and high cost of living are some of the factors that contribute to this issue. A study conducted by the Mental Health Association of Hong Kong found that one in three Hong Kong residents suffers from mental health problems.


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Obesity is also becoming an increasingly common health issue in Hong Kong, particularly among children. According to a report by the Centre for Health Protection, the prevalence of overweight and obesity among primary school students in Hong Kong was 21.1% in the 2018/19 school year. The prevalence of overweight and obesity among secondary school students was 16.5% and 7.1%, respectively.

Infectious Diseases

Infectious diseases such as influenza, measles, and dengue fever are also common in Hong Kong. The city is highly connected to other parts of the world, making it a prime location for the spread of infectious diseases. The Hong Kong government has implemented various measures to control the spread of infectious diseases, including mandatory vaccination programs and quarantine measures for incoming travelers.

Smoking in Hong Kong

Smoking is a significant public health issue in Hong Kong, with an estimated 10.5% of the population being smokers. According to a survey conducted by the Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health, the prevalence of smoking among males is much higher than females, with 22.3% of males being smokers compared to only 3.5% of females.

Attitudes Towards Smoking

The attitudes towards smoking in Hong Kong are generally negative, with a high level of awareness of the health risks associated with smoking. The Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health has been active in promoting smoking cessation and raising awareness of the dangers of smoking through various campaigns and initiatives.

Legislation on Smoking

The Hong Kong government has implemented various measures to discourage smoking and protect non-smokers from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke. The smoking rate in Hong Kong has decreased over the years, which is attributed to the stringent anti-smoking measures in place.

The smoking ban in Hong Kong applies to indoor public places, including restaurants, bars, and workplaces. The government has also implemented a ban on the sale of tobacco products to minors and requires health warnings on cigarette packages. In addition, smoking is prohibited in certain outdoor areas, including public beaches, parks, and sports grounds.

Hong Kong, like any other city, faces its fair share of health issues. Respiratory diseases, mental health, obesity, and infectious diseases are some of the most common health issues affecting the population. Smoking is also a significant public health issues.

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