|A doctor examines a hand, foot and mouth patient at the Đà Nẵng Obstetrics and Paediatrics Hospital. — VNA/VNS Photo Văn Dũng|
HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Health (MoH) has issued a warning over the increase in hand, foot and mouth cases this year.
The country has recorded more than 17,400 cases so far this year, up by four times compared with the same period last year.
At least four deaths have been confirmed related to the disease, two in Kiên Giang Province, one in An Giang Province and one in Long An Province.
Most of the cases are in southern provinces such as HCM City, Đồng Nai, Đồng Tháp and An Giang.
Hand, foot and mouth disease is a year-round disease that spreads through the gastrointestinal tract and is found in almost all 63 provinces and cities, often with an increase from April to May and October every year.
Children are susceptible to infection due to their lack of personal hygiene.
To strengthen the prevention of the disease and minimise the number of cases and deaths, the MoH has sent a written request to provincial and municipal to direct prevention work
Localities must strengthen appropriate health education, implement patriotic hygiene activities, implement good environmental sanitation, and ensure hygienic eating and drinking.
Multi-media agencies and local newspapers were asked to prioritise publishing recommendations on hand-foot-mouth disease prevention.
The education and training sector should tell educational institutions to have sufficient facilities for hand washing, perform classroom cleaning, and clean the surfaces of study desks and toys every day. It should also focus on the early detection of new cases.
The health sector will strengthen the early detection of outbreaks to avoid spreading on a large scale, organise treatment division in hospitals and care for critically ill patients to minimise deaths.
It should also prevent cross-infection in treatment facilities, especially cross-infection between hand-foot-mouth disease with measles, pneumonia and other respiratory infections.
The health sector will advise People's Committees at all levels on effective measures to handle the disease.
Provincial People's Committees must prepare a supply of drugs, bio-products, materials, chemicals and equipment for hand, foot and mouth disease prevention and control activities.
The committees will organise interdisciplinary inspection teams to inspect and support localities, take timely and appropriate measures, immediately solve difficulties and problems to prevent the disease from spreading and prolonging. — VNS