09/08/2018, 14:30 GMT+7

On June 1, the number of people who had a fever was dramatically increased from 7 in the afternoon to 23 when it was 7 p.m. Afraid the appearance of H5N7, the endoscopy department was asked to close. 

June 1 is a memorable day for doctors and many patients come to Tu Du Hospital for treatment. At 12 p.m, suddenly seven doctors and patients in endoscopy department had fever, and they felt painful throughout the body. Their symptoms are the same. At 3 p.m, the number of patients having the same symptons increased to 15, and 7 p.m the same day it rose up to 23 people including patients, relatives, patients and medical staff.

The head of the hospital was soon aware of the situation because they understand that it is not good when many people were experiencing the same symptoms at the same time.

Dr Nguyen Ba My Nhi, deputy director of Tu Du hospital, said that the situation was getting too fast. "Determining that this is a fast-spreading cluster, doctors predict that it is probably caused by a flu virus, so they ask the patients to have their blood tested." While waiting for test results, everyone worried that it may be due to H5N7 virus which was extremely dangerous, Dr. Nhi expressed. 

After analysing the data, the hospital found out that the first case had fever on June 1 was a woman from Tien Giang. This patient is waiting for surgery to endoscopic hysterectomy, but cannot be operated due to the fever. The woman was identified as the first source of the infection for others.

The same day at 9 p.m, 18 blood samples from people with fever, and muscle aches at Tu Du Hospital were examined by doctors in Nhiet Doi Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City. While waiting for the result, medical staff, relatives, patients in the Department of Endoscopy must wear face mask, and wash hands often with antiseptic liquid. Patients who have undergone surgery were also required to return to the site for follow-up as they do not want to advoid further speard of the virus to other departments. Almost everyone could not sleep that night because of being worried.

To get the results of molecular biology test samples, it takes 7-8 hours on average. Nhiet Doi Hospital's health workers had to work overnight. On June 2, the test results showed that 16 patients were affected by influenza A / H1N1. Dr. Nhi said that it was very fortunate beacause A/H1N1 is a normal seasonal flu strain, not as dangerous as influenza A / H5N7.


Khoa Nội soi, Bệnh viện Từ Dũ đã bắt đầu hoạt động trở lại. Ảnh: Lê Phương.

Department of Endoscopy of Tu Du Hospital opened again from June 4. Photo: Lê Phương.

Having identified the main cause of the symptons, the medical team was less nervous and started preventing the epidemic to spread. Tu Du Hospital began to disinfect, delay surgery, stop receiving patients in the Department of Endoscopy. 83 patients, relatives, and medical staff suspected to be affected were isolated patients. 17 patients having fever as well as 6 medical staff were treated with Tamiflu. Others are guided to prevent transmission and isolation in the local area.

All exposed surfaces, especially floors, door handles, elevator press buttons, etc. are sanitized six to seven times a day. At the 5th floor is the highest concentration of disinfection, the other faculties in the same eight-storey building was also sprayed in the style of screening.

In the morning of June 4, the beds, the examination table in the Department of Endoscopy were empty. Only five patients were isolated in a separate room and were then could go home.  All cases of H1N1 are patients in the laparoscopy waiting for surgery for gynecological diseases. No pregnant women were infected with the flu. The epidemic was controlled in the endoscopy alone, not spreading across the hospital.

After the Department of Health Ho Chi Minh City and Center for Preventive Medicine Ho Chi Minh City, Pasteur Institute had done a survey, the situation was controlled. On June 4, endoscopy department opened to patients again. Dr Nguyen Tri Dung, director of the Ho Chi Minh City Preventive Medicine Center said that this was the first case of influenza in 2018, no death due to influenza A / H1N1 was recorded in this city.

Doctors recommend that influenza A / H1N1 is a kind of seasonal flu which usually causes coughing or fever for about a week and then cured themselves. It can be dangerous for pregnant women within 12 weeks, people with chronic illnesses, children, the elderly and so on. Not all cases of H1N1 infection can affect the fetus. Pregnant women need to prevent actively, monitor carefully during the pregnancy, drinking more water, supplying more vitamin C and increasing the body's resistance system.

(Source: VnExpress)