HCM CITY TO LAUNCH LARGE-SCALE JAPANESE ENCEPHALITIS SHOTS
July 5 17:33
HO CHI MINH CITY,Ho Chi Minh City plans to vaccinate children aged from one to five years old against Japanese encephalitis from August in the wake of an increase in the prevalence of viral encephalitis in the city and other southern provinces, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported. At recent meeting with officials from the city’s district-level health centres on the development of diseases, it was reported that outbreaks of Japanese encephalitis are likely to occur in District 9, and Hoc Mon, Cu Chi and Binh Chanh districts.The disease, which is caused by a flavivirus that affects the membranes around the brain and can leave lasting damage to the central nervous system and
even death, is warned to reach its peak soon as it spreads through mosquito bites.The current rainy season in the city breeds mosquitoes, the vectors in other diseases also, warned the Municipal Health Preventive Centre.It recommended parents to strictly follow vaccination timing and dose schedule for their children against the disease.
In the first five months of this year, city doctors treated 34 children who have suffered from several types of viral encephalitis, of which only Japanese encephalitis can be avoided by vaccination.Since 1997, the national expanded immunisation programme has included Japanese encephalitis vaccination, focusing mainly on areas previously hit by
the disease.However, the continuous occurrence of viral encephalitis made the Health Ministry come to a decision to launch vaccination against Japanese encephalitis on a large scale.The city will give vaccination shots in all of its 24 districts following its measles immunization campaign.