Parents should be aware of dangerous disease in hot weather: Ministry

Hot weather is conducive for outbreaks of dangerous contagious diseases including diarrhea, pink eye, hand-foot-mouth and dengue fever among kids, said the Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health as these diseases are on upward trend.

Kids easily get sick in hot weather -SGGP

Right after being reported of the first case of the meningitis in the middle of last May,  the Department of Preventive Medicine in Ho Chi Minh City issued a warning to its sub-divisions and district medical centers about it. Five year old baby in district 11 was experiencing high fever, vomiting and rashes on skin when being hospitalized in the city Tropical Disease Hospital.

Through testing doctors diagnosed the toddler to be infected with meningitis virus. Despite of doctors’ efforts to save her, she could not escape death. Dr. Nguyen Vu Minh Thu from the Department of Preventive Medicine’s Ward of Infectious Disease Control said because the disease will widely spread if the health sector could not well control. Meningococcal disease is caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis. Babies, especially those under two months of age with their immune systems are not well developed, the bacteria can get into the bloodstream more easily.

Meningococcal disease is spread from person to person by exchanging respiratory and throat secretions (saliva or spit) during close (for example, coughing or kissing) or lengthy contact, especially if living in the same household.

In the North, the Department of Preventive Medicine raised its concern when there is an increase of meningitis cases. A representative from the Department said that in comparision with the same period last year, there has been a leap of meningitis cases when it just started.

Deputy Head of the Department Dr. Truong Dinh Bac said that babies are sensitive to weather change. Additionally, hot weather increases humidity in air which is favorable for virus and bacterium growth. Babies are vulnerable to diseases because their resistance is weak.

To prevent heat-related diseases effectively, the Department advised parents to keep good personal hygiene including washing hand with soap before eating and after going to toilet as well as preserving food and  having well cooked food. Moreover, parents must keep houses clean and clear brush around home in a bid to destroy home of mosquito - a factor to cause dengue fever - to get rid of the disease. 

Hand-foot-mouth and dengue fever are developing complicatedly in dry season. According to the Department of Health in HCMC, the city has 110 dengue fever cases bringing total cases of dengue fever to 7,773 ca since the beginning of the year, an increase of 84 percent compared to the same period last year.

The city recorded two cases of fatalities due to dengue fever meanwhile last week, 153 hospitalized cases of hand-foot-mouth were reported showing an increase of 11 percent compared to average cases of four weeks before. Total hand-foot-mouth cases in five months were over 2,000.

By Tuong Lam – translated by Uyen Phuong

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