|A doctor treats a boy at the Vietnam-Cuba Hospital's Paediatrics Department.
Tran Quang Thang, head of the Emergency Aid and Stroke Ward under the National Geriatric Hospital, said the rate of elderly people having health examinations at the hospital in June increased by 150% compared with May.
On average, 30-40 people have been hospitalised per day due to reasons related to hot weather, with many of them in critical condition, he said.
Thang said the elderly could easily have problems in hot weather because their ability to adapt to the weather was weak.
Many have underlying diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure, so hot weather put them at risk.
At the Hanoi-based Bach Mai Hospital, Dao Viet Phuong, a doctor from the Emergency Ward, said each day the ward received dozens of patients suffering from temperature shock or strokes. Most of them had worked outside or were elderly people with underlying conditions.
A similar situation happened at Saint Paul Hospital in Hanoi.
The number of children going in for health examinations this month had increased by 30% compared with last month.
Doctors at the hospital said that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students must go to school instead of having a summer holiday like in previous years. Many of them have lessons in the afternoon, which means they must go to school in the heat of the day.
Dang Bich Diep, head of the Social Work Ward under the National Hospital of Dermatology and Venereology, warned that hot weather with ultraviolet (UV) rays at high levels could cause great harm to people’s skin, however, not everyone knows how to protect it properly.
UV rays can cause sunburn, harm the skin’s cells and gradually lead to skin cancer. The time that UV rays cause the most harm is between 10am to 2pm, so people should avoid going out at that time, she said.
The hospital has treated many people suffering from sunburns, most of them people who had to work in the sun. The patients would need several weeks to recover and serious skin pains could lead to other side effects, said Diep.
Diep warned that patients should be vigilant, not treat themselves and must go to the hospital for instruction from doctors.
To protect the skin, people should apply sun cream three times per day, and apply it about 20 minutes before going out.
If the sunlight is severe, the people should choose sun cream with a high sun protection factor (SPF). For instance, when going to the beach, sun cream with SPF 50 should be chosen, said Diep.
K Hospital, which specialises in treating cancer, has conducted different measures to ease patients’ difficulties while having health examinations during hot weather days.
Nguyen Ba Tinh, head of the hospital's Welfare Work Ward, said the hospital received more than 2,000 patients for health examinations and treatment per day and many of them queued up since the early hours.
To reduce the time spent waiting in hot weather, the hospital opened three branches in Tan Trieu and Tam Hiep communes of Thanh Tri district and in Hoan Kiem district.
The hospital also operates a drinking water system to serve patients and their families.
Air conditioners were turned on all day in all treatment rooms so the patients would feel more comfortable, he said.
More trees had been planted around the hospital and more high-powered fans had been installed in waiting and examination rooms.
Doctors advise that the elderly should have regular health checks and meals with enough nutrition and vitamin, while everyone should drink about two litres of water per day.
If people have to go outside, they should have enough protective clothes and keep time in the sun to a minimum.
Tran Minh Dien, deputy director of the National Paediatrics Hospital, said if children have high temperatures, parents should bring them to hospital as soon as possible to prevent brain side effects. Children should not go out during hot days, especially between 10am and 4pm.