MoH issues urgent instructions over Chinese disease outbreak

The Ministry of Health (MoH) on January 21 issued an urgent dispatch on prevention and control of the acute pneumonia disease outbreak from China.
MoH issues urgent instructions over Chinese disease outbreak ảnh 1An official from the health ministry reviews the quarantine protocol for suspect international arrivals at Hanoi's Noi Bai international airport (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) - The Ministry of Health (MoH) on January 21 issued an urgent dispatch on prevention and control of the acute pneumonia disease outbreak from China.

The dispatch asked hospitals and clinics nationwide to set up measures for early detection and prevention to the disease, caused by novel coronavirus (nCoV).

According to the dispatch, all hospitals must set up rapid reaction teams to confront the high risk of the disease spreading.

Vietnam was at high risk of transmitting the disease caused by the new strain of coronavirus from China, said Dr. Luong Ngoc Khue, Director of the MoH’s Medical Examination and Treatment Department.

To cope with the disease, classification of patients would be implemented at the registration desks and patients with symptoms of an acute respiratory infection such as cough and fever must be isolated and examined in separate sections in hospitals or clinics.

Those who were in China within the last 14 days must be checked in terms of epidemiological factors.

If acute pneumonia is suspected, hospitals must temporarily isolate the patient and notify preventive health agencies to take samples.

Health workers must follow disease precaution standards such as wearing masks and regularly washing hands when examining patients with symptoms of acute respiratory infection.

Hospitals and clinics must prepare isolation areas and resuscitation medications as well as check medical equipment such as breathing machines, patient monitoring machines, personal protective equipment, and disinfectant chemicals.

Healthcare entities were told to strictly follow the instructions of diagnosis and treatment for the nCoV-pneumonia by the MoH issued on January 16. 

They were also urged to spread awareness among healthcare workers and citizens to detect and control the disease as well as to encourage people to report their travel history in countries affected by the disease.

Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Xuan Tuyen said Vietnam hasn’t recorded any cases of infection. However, the entry of this disease into the country is completely possible since Vietnam has constant trading and tourism activities with China.

In January and February, the MoH will send more working groups to examine disease prevention and control at hospitals and localities bordering China. It has also ordered localities to take active measures to prevent the disease and stay ready to handle and treat infection cases if there are any.

The ministry will also keep close coordination with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to update people on the latest information about this disease, Tuyen added.

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam recently required the Health Ministry to ensure sufficient facilities and medical materials, as well as make sure staff is properly trained.

According to the World Health Organisation, cases of acute pneumonia caused by nCoV were reported in Wuhan city of China’s Hubei province. The first patient developed symptoms on December 12, 2019. So far, China has reported 440 people infected with the disease, which killed nine people. Two other cases have been detected in Thailand and Japan with health authorities in both countries saying the patients had visited Wuhan prior to their hospitalisation.

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that cause illness in the upper respiratory and gastrointestinal tract of humans and some animals. They can spread through direct contact with respiratory secretions of patients.

In humans, coronaviruses cause illnesses in winter and early spring, ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases like Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).

The new strain of coronavirus has caused comparisons to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that killed nearly 650 people in mainland China and Hong Kong in 2002 and 2003.

The WHO has confirmed that the new coronavirus could be contagious between humans./.

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