Hot weather triggers seasonal diseases

As the cases of dengue fever, hand-foot-mouth disease, and chicken pox are increasing in some localities, especially in provinces in the South Vietnam, Dr. Tran Dac Phu, head of the Department of Preventive Medicine, under the Ministry of Health, said about preventative measures.

Hot weather in April and May is conducive to many seasonal diseases such as dengue fever, hand-foot-mouth, encephalitis, rabies and chicken pox, said Dr. Phu. In addition, in summer, there have been outbreaks of congestive diseases due to unsafe personal hygiene and environment.

Through inspection in three first months of the year, there has been no unusual development of infectious diseases on human such as cholera, typhoid, bacterial encephalitis and meningitis on quantity compared to the same period last year.

However, there has been an increased number of dengue fever and hand-foot-mouth cases of infections. In March alone, the country has recorded 1,575 dengue fever cases including three fatalities with two in Ho Chi Minh City and one in the southern province of Dong Nai. In there first months of the year, the country has around 7,000 dengue fever cases in 39 cities and provinces  and six people succumbed to the disease; all of them are in the South Vietnam.

Worse, compared to the same period last year, the rate of dengue fever increase by 27.4 percent and the number of deaths increased more four deaths. Though it is not peak time of the disease, the number of infections leaped more than last year when the disease decreased most within recent year. However, as per the disease’s cycle, it will hike this year.

For hand-foot-mouth, the country has reported more than 7,332 infection cases with two deaths in the Mekong delta provinces of Dong Thap and Hau Giang. Noteworthy, the outbreaks of the disease is all year around and it relates to personal hygiene and there has been no vaccine against the disease. Two diseases people should care of in summer are chicken pox and bacterial encephalitis which spread quickly.

The Ministry of Health has issued instruction of disease prevention mission including active supervision and early discovery of first case to provide timely treatment not to let the disease widespread as well as oversee the virus gene mutation.

Local governments of these localities with high number of infection cases are asked to carry out preventive measures not let the disease turn to be pandemic. Increased information and education are needed to fight against the diseases such as influenza A, dengue fever, hand-foot-mouth, measles, rubella, chicken pox and encephalitic.

People should keep their good personal hygiene including washing hands with soaps. Wash mouth with disinfectants and eat boiled foodstuff. Parents should take their children to medical clinics for vaccination on schedule. Residents should inform local administrations about the first cases of infection.

By Minh Khang - Translated by Kim Xuyen

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