Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam has asked the health sector to ensure the sufficiency of medicine and equipment for the treatment of measles patients.

“It must ensure the best conditions for treating child patients at any cost,” the Deputy PM said during his inspection of the Vietnam National Hospital of Paediatrics in Hanoi on April 15.

According to the hospital, it now provides inpatient treatment for 1,750 children, including 250 measles patients. The hospital has dedicated several departments to providing the best treatment for them.

Deputy PM Dam also asked the Ministry of Health to organise satellite hospitals and provide them with personnel and equipment to ease the overcrowding at the children’s hospital, while strictly carrying out vaccination work.

The hospital said overcrowding takes place because parents want their children to receive treatment at the highest-level medical establishments.

Tran Dac Phu, head of the ministry’s Preventive Health Department, recommended that parents bring children to grassroots hospitals if they show any symptom of measles.

Some 2,490 children have been diagnosed with the disease so far this year and 25 fatalities reported.

Measles is a cyclical disease, Phu noted, adding that this year measles is spreading at a time when pneumonia hospitalisations are also on the rise, causing a high number of serious patients.

He affirmed that no modified gene or change in toxicity of the measles virus have been revealed in research conducted by the ministry or the World Health Organisation.

A programme on vaccination against measles is being carried out in all the 63 provinces and cities and is expected to be completed within this month, Phu said.

The ministry is continuing to monitor developments of the disease to provide timely information for people and introduce preventive measures in the hope of keeping the disease under control nationwide, he added.

Vietnam aims to have eliminated the disease by 2017.-VNA