Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — At least 18 people died of rabies in the last four months, mostly because of ignorance about rabies control and prevention, reported the Preventive Medicines Department under the health ministry.
According to the department, most of the victims were not vaccinated against rabies and lived in rural areas where unvaccinated dogs roamed freely.
The department also warned that May-August was usually a peak time for rabies cases.
The Drug Administration of Việt Nam, under the health ministry, has confirmed that there are enough rabies vaccines to meet the increased demand during summer.
The demand for rabies vaccines reportedly increased since the beginning of this year amidst rumours of a shortage of the vaccine.
However, the Drug Administration of Việt Nam said reports of vaccine importers showed sufficient supply of the vaccine.
Currently, four kinds of rabies vaccines are allowed in Việt Nam.
In the northern province of Lào Cai, at least three people, including a 30-year-old man and two children aged six and and nine, reportedly died last week after being bitten by dogs. They were not vaccinated against rabies.
Last month, the province’s Diseases Control Centre declared a rabies outbreak in Bảo Thắng District. Since then, 1,020 people have visited health centres for vaccination, double the number from last year.
The health ministry advised those who got bitten by dogs/cats to first wash their wounds carefully with soap and clean water and then get vaccinated.
The ministry also warned people against using unknown medicines or asking for treatment from quacks. — VNS