Hand-foot-mouth disease re-occurs across country

Hand-foot-mouth disease re-occurred in 61 cities and provinces across the country though the number of infection cases reduced by 23.2 percent compared to the same period last year.

Worse, there has been no vaccine and medication against the disease while it is peak season for the disease.

The Department of Preventive Medicine Department under the Ministry of Health on May 12 warned parents of an outbreak of the disease during hot weather. Hand, foot, and mouth disease, or HFMD, is a contagious illness that is caused by different viruses. Infants and children younger than 5 years old are more likely to get this disease.

Symptoms usually begin with a fever, reduced appetite, sore throat, and a feeling of being unwell. A day or two after the fever starts, painful sores can develop in the mouth. A skin rash with flat red spots may also develop on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. Sometimes a rash also occurs on the knees, elbows, and buttocks. This rash may blister but won't itch. HFMD infection cases are recorded year round yet it escalates in March to May and September to October.

Noticeably, the Ministry of Health said that though since the beginning of the year the cases of HFMD decreased by 23.2 percent compared to same period last year, most of cities and provinces in the country reported infection cases. Meanwhile there is no vaccine to prevent the disease but people can take simple steps like washing your hands often and practicing good hygiene to reduce your risk of infection.

To minimize HFMD cases amongst children, parents should keep personal hygiene by washing hands many times a day for kids; adults should wash their hands before cooking, carrying babies, after going to toilet; not let babies put their hands into mouths and regularly disinfect house floor and toys. Preschools must clean the floor and disinfect toys.

Ill kids must be isolated at homes to prevent transmission to others.

By MINH KHANG – translated by Uyen Phuong

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