Ministry of Health: Arbitrarily using Tamiflu to treat flu increases the risk of drug resistance

Many people arbitrarily use Tamiflu to treat flu

The Department of Medical Examination and Treatment – Ministry of Health has just sent an urgent document to the Departments of Health of the provinces and cities; Institutes/Hospitals under the Ministry of Health; Health sectors on strengthening supervision of prescription and use of antiviral drugs in the treatment of influenza.

According to some media reports, people are looking to buy Tamiflu, which contains the active ingredient oseltamivir, to treat flu.

Ministry of Health: Arbitrary use of Tamiflu to treat influenza increases the risk of drug resistance - Photo 1.

According to the Medical Examination and Treatment Administration, Tamiflu is a drug indicated in cases of influenza infection (suspected or confirmed) with complications or risk factors; Do not arbitrarily use without a doctor’s prescription because it increases the risk of drug resistance.

This is a drug indicated in cases of influenza infection (suspected or confirmed) with complications or risk factors. drug resistance leads to undesirable effects and economic losses”- An urgent document of the Department of Medical Examination and Treatment signed by Deputy Director Nguyen Trong Khoa stated clearly.

Therefore, the Department of Medical Examination and Treatment recommends that units strengthen communication on flu prevention and control so that people understand and do not arbitrarily buy antiviral drugs to treat flu.

Directing local medical examination and treatment facilities to treat influenza according to the Guidelines for influenza diagnosis and treatment of the Ministry of Health.

Focus on safe, reasonable and effective prescribing, especially with antiviral drugs to treat influenza.

Regarding flu medicine, many people now buy Tamiflu to treat flu at home, according to a reporter of Health & Life newspaper, the owner of a pharmacy on Trieu Khuc Street (Thanh Xuan). , Hanoi) said that every day her pharmacy sells hundreds of prescriptions for treatment of influenza A.

However, in recent days, the demand to buy drugs has increased, causing many drugs to be scarce, and the prices of medicines have also fluctuated. Previously, a box of Tamiflu only cost 500,000 VND, but now it has increased to more than 600,000 VND, even the retail price on July 29 is 750,000 VND. “The price is expensive but there is no medicine to sell” said the pharmacy owner.

Dr. Vu Quoc Dat, lecturer at the Department of Infectious Diseases (Hanoi Medical University), member of WHO’s Clinical Response and Evaluation Network for Emerging Diseases, recommends that people should not arbitrarily buy Tamiflu for treatment. flu, because Tamiflu is currently mainly used for patients with severe influenza, or those at risk of severe disease progression.

“For people with no underlying medical conditions, healthy, with mild flu symptoms, taking Tamiflu is not necessary.

If Tamiflu is used improperly, it will lead to drug resistance. Like bacteria, viruses are also resistant to treatment, so excessive use of Tamiflu can increase the emergence of drug-resistant viruses. That makes it impossible to treat the flu when the patient progresses seriously,” said Dr. Vu Quoc Dat.

Prevent the spread and outbreak of outbreaks at medical examination and treatment facilities

According to the Ministry of Health, Vietnam annually still records 600,000 – 1,000,000 cases of seasonal flu, the number of cases is recorded all year round and tends to increase at the time of summer – autumn, winter – spring.

According to a recent report by the infectious disease surveillance system, the number of current cases of influenza syndrome does not differ from previous years, however, the number of hospitalizations tends to increase in one country. In some last-level hospitals, most of which are cases of influenza A (not a highly virulent strain, since the beginning of 2022 until now Vietnam has not recorded cases of avian influenza A(H5N1), A(H5N6) ), A(H5N8), A(H7N9)…).

However, in order to actively strengthen epidemic prevention and control measures, to prevent the epidemic from overlapping, the Ministry of Health on July 29 issued an urgent document requesting hospitals under the Directive to strengthen the screening of patients. cases of acute respiratory infections, pneumonia, monitoring of hospitalized cases, severe cases, intensive treatment and deaths, taking samples for testing or transferring to the Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Pasteur Institute tests to identify pathogens.

Timely report to the Ministry of Health and the Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Pasteur when detecting abnormal cases.

Medical examination and treatment establishments have well performed the task of treatment classification, medical examination and screening.

Ensure the collection, isolation, treatment, and emergency treatment of patients, paying special attention to influenza cases in high-risk groups such as pregnant women, people with chronic diseases (cardiovascular disease, tuberculosis, diabetes, malnutrition, AIDS patients,…), the elderly and children in order to minimize deaths; strictly implement infection control, prevent cross-infection, prevent the spread and outbreak of outbreaks at medical examination and treatment establishments.

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