Addressing the conference, Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Kim Tien emphasised that in 2019, her ministry established that epidemic prevention and control continues to be a high priority. The health sector closely monitors the epidemic situation both in the country and on an international scale in order to provide timely guidance for early detection and thoroughly handle outbreaks, while actively preventing epidemics and launching vaccination campaigns in high-risk areas.
However, amidst complex development of epidemics around the world, in Vietnam, although most of the circulating diseases are under control, the number of infected regarding measle, dengue fever and hand-foot-mouth disease have increased in several places.
According to Tien, vaccinations are one of the most important measures to prevent dangerous infectious diseases. Thanks to vaccinations, multiple diseases have been excluded or controlled in Vietnam. The country successfully eliminated polio in 2000 and neonatal tetanus in 2005 and also successfully protecting these result ever since. Infectious diseases that have vaccines, such as measles, diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus previously circulated annually into regular major epidemics, now are under controlled by maintaining immunisation. Vietnam has eliminated lymphatic filariasis and is making efforts to eliminate malaria, measles and rabies as well as trying to put rubella under control.
Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Kim Tien speaks at the teleconference on June 11. (Photo: moh.gov.vn)
The MoH said that the epidemic situation still has potential complications in the near future, with a high risk of emerging and dangerous diseases in the world likely to penetrate Vietnam. Diseases circulating domestically, such as hand-foot-mouth, measles and dengue fever can record an increase in the number of cases due to objective causes, including climate change, rapid urbanisation, high population density, migration and widely international and domestic exchanges.
In addition, disease prevention and control is still facing difficulties due to diseases such as dengue fever or hand-foot-mouth disease which are still without specific drugs and preventive vaccines, while epidemic prevention and control activities are mainly based on the community and public self-awareness.
The MoH recommends that the public should take initiatives in implementing preventive measures, especially against dengue fever and hand-foot-mouth disease, in addition to deploying safe vaccination.
At the conference, delegates were provided with technical guidance on supervision, treatment and prevention of dengue fever and hand-foot-mouth disease, as well as instructions on safe vaccinations and handling emergency cases of complications after vaccinations, provided by leading experts from major central hospitals.