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JustHere | December 8, 2016

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Over 300 people treated for respiratory ailments as dust storms lashed Qatar

Over 300 people treated for respiratory ailments as dust storms lashed Qatar

During the week that the country faced severe dust storms, over 300 people were treated for respiratory related issues at the Hamad Medical Corporation.

According to a statement by HMC, the main Pediatric Emergency Center at Al Saad received more than 700 urgent cases, including 74 asthmatic patients with 13 admitted for observation. Other PECs in Al Rayyan, Airport, Al Shamal and Al Daayen have received more than 600 patients including 53 asthmatic cases with 14 admitted for observation.

Health Precautions

HMC has advised residents to take basic health and safety precautions in the case of dust storms. These include:

  • Avoid going outside, especially during high winds or low visibility when the dust levels are particularly harmful. If unavoidable, spend as little time outside as possible, and avoid doing outdoor exercise. Keep your windows and doors closed.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or damp cloth to reduce inhalation of particles of dust when going out.
  • When driving, keep the car’s windows closed, and opt for air conditioning instead of fresh air.
  • Avoid rubbing your eyes in order to prevent eye infection, which is common during this season. Wear protective gear such as airtight goggles. If your eyes become irritated, rinse with water. Be especially careful if you wear contact lenses.
  • During hot weather, always carry a supply of water to keep from being dehydrated.
  • People who are prone to bad allergies should start using their antihistamines during this season, even before the symptoms start.

People at high risk of contracting respiratory infection include infants and young children, the elderly, people with a history of asthma, bronchitis, emphysema or other respiratory conditions, people with heart disease, pregnant women, and people who have to work outdoors, such as construction or delivery workers.

Symptoms of allergy include: watering of the eyes, cough, wheezing or asthma. Meanwhile, those who have severe trouble breathing, or start coughing green sputum, might have a lung infection and have been advised to go to the Emergency Department.

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