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As Measles Hits 43 Provinces in Vietnam, Officials Warn of Potential Outbreak

The number of measles patients is still on the rise, according to health authorities.

The Ministry of Health recently announced that since early February, numerous measles cases have been spotted in 43 provinces and cities, with 664 of them located in the nation's southern region, Thanh Nien reports.

The Hanoi Department of Health has also reported 192 cases of measles since the start of the year, which is a significantly higher number than last year when only 22 cases occurred in the first two months. In Saigon, all 24 districts have reported cases of the measles; most are in District 7, Binh Thanh, Thu Duc and Binh Chanh districts. Other provinces with a high number of patients include Binh Duong, Bac Ninh, Quang Ninh, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ca Mau, Dien Bien and Yen Bai.

According to a recent report from the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health, 5,246 cases of fever with rash, typical symptoms of measles, have been recorded nationwide.

As much as 90% of reported measles patients either didn't receive vaccinations, haven't been fully vaccinated, or have an unknown vaccination status. Hoang Duc Hanh, vice director of the Hanoi Department of Health, said that the reasons for this worrying trend can be linked to uneven immunization coverage and increasing global mobility. 

In one severe case, an infected 28-year-old woman in Hanoi was diagnosed with meningitis, which is considered a rare complication of measles.  

[Photo via NPR]

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