Two more people died of cholera in Mandera on Friday, raising the number of deaths to 13 due to the disease in the past three months as the situation gets worse.
Some 89 other patients suffering from cholera have been admitted at Mandera Referral hospital.Medecins Sans FrontiAres (MSF) humanitarian officer Abubak Abdullahi termed the situation in the county as critical.
“The situation is quite chaotic and critical as we are receiving patients in the final stages of the disease making it difficult to manage,” said Mr Abdullahi.
He said all the patients at the temporary cholera treatment centre were in critical stage.
“We are actually facing a massive outbreak in Mandera town going by the number of patients we are receiving hourly,” he added.
He said the outbreak affected the entire town and its environs.
“We need to have concerted efforts by all stakeholders to control the situation that is threatening to get out of hand,” he said.
He could not give an exact number of victims of the cholera saying MSF team was still consulting the county health department to know how many are infected.
Emergency team leader Ahmed Garat said the centre has registered over 64 patients within 24 hours.
“We took over the cholera situation at Mandera hospital on Friday and up to now we have recorded over 60 patients and two deaths,” he said.
He said most of the patients were brought in while in shock and in late stage of disease making it difficult for the team to handle.
The treatment centre has received little support from the national government despite arrival of surveillance team from Nairobi, Mr Garat said.
“The team arrived here in the morning and promised to give support from any minute and we are waiting as the situation gets pathetic,” said Mr Garat.
Health executive Ahmed Sheikh said consultative meetings have been held on ways of dealing with the crisis.
“We have had a meeting with Kenya Red Cross and Ministry of Health and we shall be finding a way out of the situation,” said Mr Sheikh who said his team was in the process of getting the exact number of patients infected with cholera in Mandera.
By Wednesday, a total of 734 people had been infected with cholera, a figure that is expected to rise.
“We shall be able to know how many people are infected with cholera in due time as our team is still compiling the figures,” he said.
Mr Garat said Chikungunya outbreak worsened the cholera situation as some patients suffered from both diseases.
“We have patients attacked by both diseases making them more weak leading to deaths, a thing that is worrying us,” he said as he appealed for more assistance from other health stakeholders.
Source: The Nation