Whooping cough resurfaces in Thừa Thiên-Huế after more than ten years

July 09, 2024 - 16:20
Pertussis reappeared in Thừa Thiên-Huế central province after more than ten years, with five suspected cases, of which two tested positive for the virus.
A whooping cough patient is under special care at the Huế General Hospital. — Photo courtesy of the hospital

THỪA THIÊN-HUẾ — Whooping cough has re-emerged in the central province of Thừa Thiên-Huế after more than ten years, with five suspected cases, of which two already tested positive for the virus, the provincial health department announced on Tuesday.

All five cases are under supervision at the Huế General Hospital.

Two patients who were tested positive for the disease are from Huế City and Hương Thủy Town. They are children under three months old, who either have not been vaccinated or have just been vaccinated and have not yet got immunity.

Leaders of the local health department said that after recording suspected cases, the health sector coordinated with affected localities to organise investigations, take test samples and send them to the Nha Trang Pasteur Institute for confirmatory testing.

The department has stepped up communication messaging to raise people's awareness about the disease.

The health sector is continuing to supervise to promptly detect cases in the community, as well as in medical facilities to control and prevent outbreaks.

The provincial health sector strengthens the work of admitting, treating and resuscitating patients, moving them to upper-level when required and preventing cross-infection in medical facilities.

It maintains vaccination rates, reviewing cases that have not been vaccinated or not to the right level, organising top up vaccinations according to the Ministry of Health’s instructions.

The health department said that whooping cough was an acute respiratory infection caused by pertussis bacteria.

The disease often occurs in children under five years old, is severe and can easily lead to death, causing complications of bronchitis and pneumonia, especially in those who have not been fully vaccinated.

It transmits through the respiratory tract by direct contact with the patient's nasopharyngeal secretions when coughing or sneezing.

The infection rate is high in people living in the same closed space, such as households and schools.

Statistics of the Department of Preventive Medicine showed that in the first five months this year, the country recorded 127 cases of whooping cough, 7.9 times greater than the same period last year.

The main reason is the interruption in vaccines supply under the Expanded Immunisation Programme, which has affected the nationwide coverage rate. — VNS