Ministry orders close supervision at border gates to detect acute hepatitis case

Today, the Ministry of Health sent an official dispatch to institutes of Hygiene and Epidemiology, institutes of Pasteur, and departments of health in provinces and cities nationwide, especially border crossings on the surveillance of acute hepatitis cases of unknown cause in children.
Ministry orders close supervision at border gates to detect acute hepatitis cases of unknown cause in children ảnh 1

Accordingly, the Ministry of Health suggested that municipal and provincial departments of health focus on directing the medical facilities in their respective localities in charge when detecting cases of acute hepatitis, especially in the group of children under 16 years old to discover acute hepatitis of unknown etiology, according to the World Health Organization-WHO case definition).
For provinces with border gates, the health sector must strengthen supervision at border crossings in order to detect cases with suspected symptoms early for appropriate guidance and management. If any suspected cases are discovered, the Ministry requested the local Department of Health to immediately report to the Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Pasteur in the area in charge to agree on taking samples for testing and identifying the agent when necessary.
At the same time, localities should strengthen communication to inform people about the situation of acute hepatitis of unknown cause and temporary prevention measures, focusing on the following measures including ensuring personal hygiene and preventing the disease by washing your hands often with soap and common antiseptic solutions, cover your mouth when sneezing to prevent hepatitis of unknown cause and some other common infectious diseases.
The Ministry of Health requested the Institutes of Hygiene and Epidemiology and institutes of Pasteur to direct, guide, and support localities in monitoring, supervising, and handling cases of acute hepatitis of unknown cause; synthesize, evaluate the situation, propose prevention measures and report to the Department of Preventive Medicine for synthesis.
According to the WHO’s update, as of May 7, 2022, more than 300 cases of acute hepatitis of unknown origin including nine deaths have been reported from 23 countries in n Europe, America, Southeast Asia, Western Pacific.
The disease occurs in children from one month to 16 years old, and most patients recover completely, however, there are some severe cases, and nearly 10 percent of cases require liver transplantation. WHO also said that the possible case (surveillance case) is in children under 16 years of age with acute hepatitis not caused by hepatitis A, B, C, D, or E virus with elevated liver enzymes above 500 IU/l (SGOT or SGPT) and symptom onset from October 1, 2021, to present.
At present, the exact cause of acute hepatitis in children mentioned above has not been determined, investigations and studies of acute hepatitis of unknown cause are underway.

By Q. Lap – Translated by Anh Quan

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