New Delhi, Jue 18: Chinese health workers are getting ready to counter epidemics in the quake-hit districts, although no major disease outbreaks have so far been reported after the devastating earthquake on May 12 claimed thousands of lives. The reconstruction of healthcare facilities in areas affected by the quake is a priority, Minister of Health Chen Zhu told a meeting of health officials on Tuesday. Given the huge loss of manpower, medical workers from other parts of the country would be engaged for the task, he added. He thanked the disease prevention and control workers, as the number of cases of communicable diseases in the quake zone had not surpassed the last year figures.
However, that does not mean there will be no such cases, Chen said. As summer arrives, the threat of infectious diseases, which often come up in warm weather increases and those suffering from injury are most at risk, China Daily reported. The Health Ministry website reveals that from June 1-10, more than 500,000 children under the age of 12 in quake-affected areas were vaccinated against infections such as hepatitis A and encephalitis B,
The Chinese Government is now concentrating on mass rehabilitation of survivors and the containment of disease after dealing with the emergencies, Chen said. Dr Hans Anders Troedsson, the WHO's chief representative to China, added that infection outbreaks would remain a health risk as long as there are makeshift houses and high densities of people.