El Nino increases risk of epidemic outbreaks hinh anh 1Care is given to a child with dengue fever in a peadiatrics hospital in southern Ca Mau province. (Source: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – Global climate change and the El-Nino phenomenon have raised the risk of epidemic outbreaks if precautious measures are not properly taken, said a health official.

Truong Dinh Bac, Deputy Director of the General Department of Preventive Medicine, told the press in Ho Chi Minh City on December 2 that approximately 62,000 cases of dengue fever and 50,000 cases of hand-foot-mouth disease have been reported throughout Vietnam since the beginning of 2015.

As dengue virus has different types, patients can contract the virus many times and later infections can be more serious, he added.

In addition, the health official warned the potential increase of influenza and bird flu, such as A(H5N1), A(H5N6) and A(H7N9) as winter has set in. Six bird flu outbreaks have been reported in five provinces across the country and are still in the 21-day quarantine period, he said.

According to the General Department of Preventive Medicine, 10 out of 82 people with streptococcal infections have died since early this year . The department advised people on safe handling and cooking of pork, especially those in Ho Chi Minh City and Tien Giang province where seven and six cases, respectively, were recorded.

Health officials urged precautious measures against epidemics among families. Mothers should strictly follow the recommended immunization schedules for their children while every one is advised to wash hand regularly, eat well cooked food and keep warm.-VNA