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Press Release

DH's special arrangement on infant formulae with low iodine content

13 August 2012

A spokesman for the Department of Health (DH) said today (August 13) that the test result of the remaining blood sample of an infant aged one to eight months who is taking the infant milk formula with low iodine content was found normal.

The latest result took the total number of blood samples for thyroid function tests to 99, of which 98 were normal while one revealed that the thyroid-stimulating hormone level was slightly below the reference range. According to specialists of the Hospital Authority (HA), this result is not due to iodine deficiency. The infant concerned has been referred to the paediatric specialist clinic of HA for follow-up.

The spokesman said that in view of the relatively low utilisation rate of the blood taking service at the 10 designated Maternal and Child Health Centres (MCHCs) in the past few days, and the fact that there was only one infant having blood taking for thyroid function yesterday, DH’s blood taking service would be adjusted.

"With effect from this afternoon, if parents wish to have the blood test for their babies aged one to eight months who are taking infant milk formulae with low iodine content, they can register with any MCHC in person during office hours. Blood taking arrangement will be made within three working days."

Meanwhile, up to noon today, the DH hotline (2125 1111), operating from 9am to 9pm daily, had received 3,926 enquiries from members of the public.

One hundred and fifty-four callers said that their infants were mainly consuming the infant formulae concerned. They had been advised to change to another brand of cow milk-based formula with adequate iodine content.

Updated information will be uploaded to the DH's website ( for public reference.

13 August 2012