Hand-foot-mouth disease on the rise in Vietnam's south, seven dead so far

A patient with hand-foot-mouth disease being treated in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang. - VNA/VNS

HCM CITY (Vietnam News/Asia News Network): Cities and provinces in the south are seeing a spike in the incidence of hand-foot-mouth disease among children, and in the number of patients in serious condition, and there have been at least seven deaths due to the disease.

The southern region’s 20 cities and provinces have so far this year recorded around 11,000 cases, mostly caused by the Enterovirus 71 (EV71) virus, which can lead to severe complications and death, according to the Pasteur Institute in HCM City.

There have been seven deaths this year.

EV71 also caused HFMD outbreaks in 2011 and 2018.

HCM City and Binh Duong, Dong Nai, An Giang, and Kien Giang provinces have seen a spike in infections and severe cases in the past few weeks.

Although the number of infections in HCM City has been down 53 per cent from the same period last year, the number of severe cases increased, according to its Department of Health.

More than 3,430 cases have been recorded in the city, with 184 currently being treated at hospitals, all of them under six years old.

The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in Dong Thap Province reported a total of 902 cases so far this year, including one death.

In An Giang Province, the number of HFMD cases rose sharply this month to an average of 90 a week.

It has recorded 600 HFMD cases and also one death.

Paediatrics hospitals in the south are facing a lack of drugs for treating severe HFMD cases like gamma globulin and phenobarbital.

Tran Quang Hien, director of the An Giang Department of Health, said the drugs were expected to be available again from early next month.

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Vietnam , HFMD , deaths


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