|A child with dengue fever is treated at the HCM City Paediatrics Hospital No.1. — VNA/VNS Photo Phương Vy|
HCM CITY — Abrupt weather changes this year have triggered several disease outbreaks, according to health experts.
The HCM City Preventive Health Centre has warned that the unseasonable rains in the city since the Lunar New Year could see more people hospitalised with dengue fever; hand, foot, and mouth; respiratory ailments; and diarrhoea.
Dr Nguyễn Trí Dũng, the centre’s head, said people should take preventive measures like destroying mosquitoes and larvae and maintaining personal hygiene.
Statistics released by the Paediatrics Hospital 2’s infectious diseases ward on Monday (February 6) showed that 22 dengue patients are receiving treatment, double the number compared to the same period last year.
Of them, four are in the serious condition, including a child who is on a ventilator.
According to Dr Lê Tiến Dũng of the University Medical Centre, when the weather changes suddenly, viral fever and pneumonia often break out, with children, seniors and people with low immunity especially at risk.
Trần Minh Điển, deputy head of the National Hospital of Paediatrics in Hà Nội, told Tuổi Trẻ (Youth) newspaper that the weather this year had been “strange.”
Normally after Tết the weather in the north is humid, he said, pointing out that this year temperatures had been quite high at night and low in the morning. "The difference in temperature is high, leading to increased risk of respiratory diseases," he said.
On Monday his hospital admitted 1,300 patients, many of them with respiratory diseases, he said.
Dr Nguyễn Thành Nam, head of the paediatrics ward at another Hà Nội hospital, Bạch Mai, said on Monday the ward was filled with children, half of them with respiratory ailments.
There were also children with chickenpox, which often breaks out during the transition from winter to spring, he said.
The Hà Nội Preventive Health Centre warned that mumps, measles, rubella and other diseases could break out.
Nam advised that parents should raise resistance for their children by feeding them sufficient nutrition, keeping them warm and in the hygiene condition in order to prevent from infecting diseases via respiratory tract.
They also should bring their children to health facilities to get vaccines against chickenpox, mumps, measles and others. — VNS