Tuesday, March 14, 2006

HFM Disease 2

The HFM disease has claimed another life; an 8-month old infant.

The boy is the 7th victim of the HFM outbreak in Sarawak. There are now a total of 4278 cases.

In 1997, 29 children died in The HFM outbreak in Sarawak. And 10 years later, it looks like we didn't learn anything from the 1997 outbreak.

And today we read that 15 children have been diagnosed with HFM disease in Kedah! Although it is reported to be the first case in the Peninsular, but i doubted that.

I think the Health Ministry has to take a stricter action in controlling the outbreak. Children travelling to and fro Sarawak should be ban, to contain the outbreak. With the current school holiday season, it's gonna get worse. The medias should be used to educate the public about the disease. Since there's no specific remedy, prevention is really important. Cleanliness and personal hygiene is the key.

I remember during the early 80s, there were these public service TV programs on Dengue, each about 5 mins long. They would show how the Aedes mosquito breed, how to make sure the house and surrounding is clean, etc. It's very informative and it leaves a lasting impression on me. I still remember the video till this day, as well as another Dadah ads. So I think these similar programs should be used to educate the public on the HFM disease. Use the TV and radio to reachout to the Public. Send health officers to rural areas to talk and educate the rural folks, since I think most of them rely on rivers as their source of water. And the Rejang is believed to be the source of the outbreak.

For parents, do look out for signs of HFM such as mouth ulcers, skin lesions and rashes on hands and legs. Early detection is really important.