CHANGSHA, May 15 (Bernama) -- A total of 19 children died of hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD) in April in central China's Hunan Province, according to the provincial health bureau on Tuesday.
Data from the bureau revealed 20,078 cases of HFMD infections were reported in April, which was three times higher than that recorded in March.
Reports also showed about 70 severely infected children were admitted to hospitals in the province on average every day, Xinhua news agency reported.
The bureau has warned of the high prevalence of the disease and other infectious diseases such as paratitis and measles during the season.
Li Shuangjie, an HFMD expert at Hunan Provincial Children's Hospital, attributed the disease's prevalence to ongoing rainy weather as excessive humidity is conducive to the spreading of the virus.
The Hunan flood control and drought relief headquarters said Monday that continuous rain had affected over 2.91 million people in 50 of the province's counties as of Monday.
Fang Yibing, deputy head of Hunan's health bureau said local authorities were ordered to prepare for disaster relief work and medical workers had been sent to assist in HFMD prevention work in kindergartens and primary schools.