Thursday, December 13 2018

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Health ministry kicks off campaign to prevent measles, HFM outbreak

Update: October, 12/2018 - 18:04
A woman washes her son’s hands with soap and water to prevent the spread of hand-foot-mouth disease. — VNS Photo Ngọc Diệp
Viet Nam News

HCM CITY — Hospitals in HCM City have been told to detect, classify and isolate patients with measles, dengue fever or hand-foot-mouth (HFM) disease to avoid cross-contamination, Minister of Health Nguyễn Thị Kim Tiến has said.

The city’s People’s Committee in combination with the Ministry of Health on Friday kicked off a campaign with an aim to prevent an outbreak during the peak season for these infections.

Speaking at the annual campaign’s launch ceremony, Tiến called on hospitals to strengthen preventive measures to control the spread of disease.

She also asked media to provide information about preventive measures to raise awareness about those diseases among the community.

The campaign aims to mobilise the entire healthcare system and community.

It is urging everyone to wash their hands regularly with water and soap, disinfect homes, schools and public playgrounds, and get vaccinations against measles.

Authorised agencies should closely monitor the situation in schools and take steps to prevent the spread of dengue fever.

With a high population density and many migrant workers, the city has favourable conditions for the development of many infectious diseases.

Hospitals in the city regularly receive many severe cases from neighbouring provinces.

About 40-50 per cent of all infections at Pediatrics Hospital 1, Pediatrics Hospital 2, HCM City Pediatrics Hospital and HCM City Hospital for Tropical Diseases are from neighbouring provinces.

In the first nine months of the year, hand-foot-mouth disease and dengue fever have a significant decrease in the number of cases in the city. The city recorded 3,678 in-patient cases and 14,714 out-patient cases of HFM, with a decrease of 21 per cent compared to the same period last year.

Meanwhile, the number of dengue fever cases fell 14 per cent against the same period last year, with 13,127 in-patient cases and 8,106 out-patient cases.

The city has recorded 143 fever and rash cases, with 46 of those testing positive for measles.

Its health sector is expanding the use of geographic information system (GIS) technology for disease surveillance.

Currently, measles vaccines are being offered free for children born in 2016 and 2017 in the city.

The city is also offering free measles-rubella combination vaccines for children aged three to five.

It is home to 319 medical stations, 13 hospitals and more than 100 vaccination facilities.

The same campaign kicked off in Hà Nội on Saturday.  — VNS

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