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Locals and police are usually very helpful in emergencies. Most officers speak some English or will contact someone who does. For police, fire, and ambulance, dial 999. There are 24-hour accident and emergency services at the Caritas, Prince of Wales, and Queen Mary hospitals. Queen Mary Hospital also has a 24-hour pharmacy. Local drugstore/pharmacy chains Watsons and Mannings have shops throughout the city; closing times generally vary between 7:30 pm and 10:30 pm. Most of the 12 private hospitals in Hong Kong have only primary and secondary medical services. The 41 government-run public hospitals cover all three types. Most treatments in public hospitals are heavily subsidized or free (www.ha.org.hk).
U.S. Consulate General (26 Garden Rd., Central, Hong Kong. 2523-9011. hongkong.usconsulate.gov.)
General Emergency Contacts
Police, fire, & ambulance (999.)
Hong Kong Police Hotline (2527-7177.)
Hospitals and Clinics
Caritas Medical Centre (111 Wing Hong St., Sham Shui Po, Kowloon, Hong Kong. 3408-7911. www.ha.org.hk.)
Prince of Wales Hospital (30-32 Ngan Shing St., Sha Tin, New Territories, Hong Kong. 2632-2211. www.ha.org.hk/pwh.)
Queen Elizabeth Hospital (30 Gascoigne Rd., Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon, Hong Kong. 2958-8888. www.ha.org.hk/qeh.)
Queen Mary Hospital (102 Pok Fu Lam Rd., Pok Fu Lam, Western, Hong Kong. 2855-3838. www.ha.org.hk/qmh.)
Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital (3 Lok Man Rd., Chai Wan, Hong Kong. 2595-6111. www.ha.org.hk.)
Ruttonjee Hospital (266 Queen's Road E., Wan Chai, Hong Kong. 2291-2000. www.ha.org.hk.)
Tseung Kwan O Hospital (2 Po Ning La., Tseung Kwan O, Kowloon. 2208-0111. www.ha.org.hk.)
Mannings (2299-3381. www.mannings.com.hk/eng.)
Watsons (2608-8383. watsons.com.hk.)
As different countries have different worldviews, look at travel advisories from a range of governments to get more of a sense of what's going on out there. And be sure to parse the language carefully. For example, a warning to "avoid all travel" carries more weight than one urging you to "avoid nonessential travel," and both are much stronger than a plea to "exercise caution." A U.S. government travel warning is more permanent (though not necessarily more serious) than a so-called public announcement, which carries an expiration date.
The U.S. Department of State's Web site has more than just travel warnings and advisories. The consular information sheets issued for every country have general safety tips, entry requirements (though be sure to verify these with the country's embassy), and other useful details.
Consider registering online with the State Department (travelregistration.state.gov), so the government will know to look for you should a crisis occur in the country you're visiting.
Hong Kong is a highly safe place as far as crime goes. Besides a few random acid attacks in Mong Kok and Causeway Bay, the only large-scale safety threats were health-related: the SARS outbreak in 2003, intermittent fears over Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 (avian flu), and H1N1 (swine flu) in 2009. A massive awareness program stopped the spread of the illnesses, but it's worth checking to be sure there have been no new outbreaks.
General Information and Warnings
U.S. Department of State (888/407-4747 in U.S.; 202/501-4444 from outside U.S. www.travel.state.gov.)
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