The CIWEC Clinic Newsletter – December 2010

Nepal saw a rebound of tourism this fall season with hotels full in Kathmandu and Pokhara. This was such a positive thing for the whole country and we hope that this trend will continue into the visit Nepal year 2011.  Increased flow of tourists in to the country meant that we got busier with sick and injured travelers.

We are proceeding with plans to add on a wing to the existing clinic building to have more outpatient, inpatient spaces and to also accommodate a small intensive care unit as well an operation theatre. When this new wing is completed within the year 2011, we will be able to take care of more complex cases and be able to offer surgical procedures within the clinic itself.

Due to construction work that will start in the first week in December, there will be a smaller parking space available within the clinic premises. This limitation will ease a bit once the ground floor is done. We apologize for this inconvenience and will take measures to minimize noise pollution.

Dengue in Nepal

We had been wondering as to when dengue will hit Nepal since this is a very common disease in Asia. We didn`t have to wait long and post- monsoon saw the largest number of reports of dengue patients from within Nepal. There were patients reported from Chitwan with a few deaths. Confirmatory tests are still pending. The disease does have the potential to spread to Kathmandu and other areas in future since the vector is present here. However, there should not be a risk of dengue in the winter months even for the visitors to Chitwan national park.

Influenza and the seasonal flu vaccine for 2010-2011

Flu or influenza is characterized by the abrupt onset of fever, headache, muscle aches, sore throat and cough. Unlike other common respiratory illnesses, flu can be severely debilitating for a number of days resulting in inability to work or carry on with normal activities. Since flu is caused by a virus, general antibiotics cannot shorten the length or severity of illness. Influenza pandemic declared by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2009 in the wake of H1N1 or swine flu outbreaks around the world has now been repealed as of August 2010.

Winter time is when influenza comes to Nepal. The good news is that this season`s annual flu vaccine contains the swine flu (H1N1) component obviating the need for a separate swine flu vaccine.  If you have already had the swine flu vaccine, you should still get the seasonal flu vaccine.

Flu vaccine

Flu vaccine consists of parts of three different strains of influenza virus that were in circulation the previous season. The vaccine has very few side effects, and a single injection in adults offers protection from flu for about one year. A new flu shot would have to be obtained the following winter to maintain protection.

Who should take the flu vaccine? –  It is now recommended that any person over 6 months of age who does not have contra-indication to getting the flu vaccine should get the vaccine. The vaccine is considered safe, and has minimal side effects. The attack rate is high among travelers, who often are more vulnerable due to the stress of travel and congestion of many forms of public transport and restaurants. The vaccine causes antibodies to reach their full protective levels within two weeks. It is safe and effective for children over 6 months of age. Because children`s immune systems are not as developed as adults, previously unimmunized children from 6 months to 8 years of age should receive two injections a month apart to achieve full protection.

Persons with severe allergy to eggs or serious reaction to a previous dose of the flu vaccine should not get the flu vaccine.

Flu vaccine is now available at the clinic.

Immunizations can be obtained 7 days a week from 9am to 4.30PM (except for lunch time of 12 noon- 1 PM)

We thank you for your continued support. Best wishes for the holiday season and for the New Year!!! Just a reminder…. we are open every single day of the year and do not close for the holidays.

The CIWEC Team

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