Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Doctors have urged the elderly and children to stay out of the heat as temperatures have climbed in recent days.
The National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting said that temperatures in the city have ranged from 26 degrees Celsius to 35 degrees Celsius in the last few days.
The HCM City University Medical Centre said that 5,800 people since last week had visited the centre for examinations because of hot weather, an increase of 10 per cent compared to normal days and 6 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Most of the patients have respiratory and digestive problems or chronic diseases such as asthma and heart conditions.
Since last month, the city’s paediatrics hospitals have been overcrowded.
The city Paediatrics Hospital 1 on April 17 was packed with parents and children. Since last month, it has treated nearly 5,000-6,000 patients each day. Of the number, 80 per cent had respiratory and digestive problems.
Paediatrics Hospital 2’s digestive diseases department admitted 160 children for treatment daily, while only 120 children were treated on normal days.
Dr Đinh Thạc of the Paediatrics Hospital 2 told Sài Gòn Giải Phóng (Liberated Sài Gòn) newspaper that food exposed to high temperatures for a long period can become contaminated with bacteria, leading to digestive disorders.
Thạc said that air conditioners also contribute to respiratory problems, particularly when people frequently go in and out of cooled rooms to go outdoors.
Thạc said that parents should use fans and air conditioners properly and maintain food safety and hygiene.
Nguyễn Viết Hậu, deputy head of HCM City University Medical Centre’s emergency aids department, said that older people in hot weather conditions were more susceptible to stroke, especially when they are dehydrated and have an insufficient amount of salt.
When body temperature increase, heart, respiratory system, liver, kidney and especially nerves can be affected.
If people have symptoms such as headache, vertigo and perception disorders, they should be brought to hospital, Hậu said.
A cool gauze should be placed on many parts of their body to reduce the temperature, he added.
Older people should pay more attention to blood pressure and drink enough water, he said. —VNS