The Ho Chi Minh City Center for Disease Control (HCDC) said on Thursday it is monitoring people entering the city from regions hit by the Nipah virus, whose spread has killed two people in India's southern state of Kerala within one week.
The southern Indian state recently reported six Nipah infections in one week, with two dead and a nine-year-old patient in serious conditions.
More than 700 people, including healthcare workers, were tested for the deadly virus.
The Kerala administration shut some schools, offices, and public transport in an attempt to curb the spread of the Nipah virus.
Given the spread of the deadly virus, the HCDC ramped up efforts to monitor those entering the southern Vietnamese metropolis from virus-hit areas via Tan Son Nhat International Airport and seaports citywide to early detect and timely handle those with probable Nipah infection.
Those who develop fever and headache symptoms along with respiratory problems such as coughing, a sore throat, and shortness of breath from three to 14 days after leaving virus-hit areas should visit the nearest medical center for a health check-up and treatment, the HCDC said.
The HCDC cited WHO data as saying that Nipah virus infection is a zoonotic illness that is transmitted to people from animals, and can also be passed through contaminated food or directly from person to person.
In infected people, it causes a range of illnesses from asymptomatic infection to acute respiratory illness and fatal encephalitis.
There are currently no drugs or vaccines that specifically target Nipah virus infection, which has the fatality rate of between 40 and 75 percent, according to the WHO.
The incubation period of the disease is from four to 14 days. Also, encephalitis and seizures occur in severe cases, progressing to a coma within 24-48 hours.
To prevent Nipah infection, the HCDC advised people to regularly wash their hands with soaps, dodge direct contact with infected bats and pigs, and avoid consuming fruits or fruit products contaminated with urine or saliva from infected fruit bats.
In India, this has been the fourth outbreak of the Nipah virus since 2018.
The Nipah virus was first detected in Malaysia and Singapore in the 1998-99 period, killing 105 people, including 96 in Malaysia and nine in Singapore.