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Cold snap sickens elders, children

Update: January, 03/2014 - 08:37

Children were suffering from a variety of conditions such as allergic rhinitis and pneumonia due to the unusual weather changes.— Photo phunuonline

HCM CITY (VNS) — Thousands of elderly people and children have been hospitalised this week in HCM City due to the recent cold spell that has seen temperatures drop below 18 degrees Celsius.

The cold snap hit the city late last week and is said to be the coldest for a decade.

The National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting said the lowest temperature had previously recorded in the city was 21.1 degrees Celsius in 2004.

Around 10,000 children were taken to hospital during the coldest two days, and the number that was kept in for treatment was nearly that of double normal days, the hospital said.

Children were suffering from a variety of conditions such as allergic rhinitis and pneumonia due to the unusual weather changes.

Head of the Children Hospital No 2's Respiratory Department Tran Thi Thu Loan told Lao Dong (Labour) newspaper that children under two years old in the city – where warm weather usually prevails all year around, had suffered the most from the unusual cold spell.

If parents did not keep their children warm, they could easily contract respiratory-related diseases such as bronchitis, Loan said.

Parents were advised to add more vitamin C to children's diets to boost their immune systems during the cold weather, she added.

They should avoid taking their children to crowded areas where they could easily contract diseases.

Director of District 2 Hospital Tran Van Khanh said that an additional 30-50 elderly people were being hospitalised daily, mainly suffering from arthritis and pneumonia.

According to the Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Centre, temperatures were likely to drop again early next week. — VNS

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