County government to counter malaria and cholera outbreak

Turkana County Government has moved to contain malaria and cholera outbreak that is reported to have claimed lives of 10 people.

The county government announced that it will undertake counter initiatives that include spraying of households and distribution of mosquito nets to curb the spread of the disease.

The announcement was made by County Executive Committee Member for Health and Sanitation Ms. Jane Ajele during a stake holders’ meeting she chaired at her office Tuesday.

Malaria and cholera outbreaks have been reported at the Kakuma refugee camp in Turkana West Constituency where nine refugees and one resident have died with surveillance team from the Ministry of Health reporting seven cases of cholera at the camp and its surrounding.

The Ministry and partners such as MENTOR Initiative rolled out the counter measures with a team sent to the refugee camp to assess the state of cholera and help by supplying cholera beds and other necessary provisions.

Health officials have expressed fears that cholera virus that has hit the camp had been carried in by refugees who had recently emigrated from Southern Sudan.

Ajele said the County Government was well placed to handle the outbreaks but asked partners such as UNHCR to involve her ministry whenever such cases are reported.

Deputy Director in the Preventive and Promotional Health Division Dr. Daniel Esimit urged for better use of mosquito nets saying they were not meant to cover poultry sheds as was the case in most places in the county.

The Ministry of Health has trained clinicians and prepared them to handle the Marburg virus which presents symptoms similar to that of Ebola.

The virus is known to originate from Uganda and since Turkana County shares the border they have taken the initiative to prevent it by quarantining those infected.

The CEC said the general community will be trained alongside the community health volunteers to help in health education promotion.

Source: Kenya News Agency