“We have put up separate wards at the health units to accommodate patients suffering from cholera."
PIC: District authorities are warning against drinking unboiled water
Three people have died following a fresh outbreak of the cholera epidemic in Namayingo district.
They reportedly contracted the cholera virus after drinking water contaminated with fecal matter at Lugala landing site in Banda sub-county recently.
Getrude Taaka, 45, John Wafula, 34 and Patrick Ouma, 24, were all residents of Buyundo village.
The district health inspector Namayingo, Mafrey Oundo said majority of people residing especially on the landing sites always drink unboiled water that is likely to be contaminated with human waste, putting them at high risk of contracting cholera.
Oundo said the district lacks funds to set up a cholera isolation camp but has introduced treatment centers at Sigulu Health Center III, Buyinja Health Center IV, Mutumba Health Center III and Lolwe Health Center III to accommodate cholera patients.
“We have put up separate wards at the health units to accommodate patients suffering from cholera,” he said.
Blood samples of the three dead people were first taken to Banda Health Center III and later to the government analytical laboratory in Kampala where they were tested positive for cholera.
It is understood Namayingo has introduced measures aimed at curbing the spread of the disease to other districts.
One of the ways if by door-to-door sensitization of the locals against eating food before washing hands with soap. Authorities are also discouraging people from greeting people while at funerals of people who would have died of cholera.
The district has also introduced a community-based cholera surveillance team that will monitor cases of people with symptoms of the disease like vomiting and diarrhea and submit feed back to health authorities for necessary action.
The latest deaths bring to 12 the number of people who have died of cholera following an outbreak in the district in April this year.
A section of the local public has accused district authorities of being slow in tackling the epidemic.
Sande Barasa, a resident of Lugala landing site, says the district would have introduced mass sensitization about the disease through media like on radio talk shows, television or newspapers.
He says majority of people, especially in rural areas, are contracting the disease as a result of ignorance about the manner in which it is transmitted. “Many people don’t know that, for example, if you eat cold food you are at a high risk of contracting the disease.”
The chief administrative officer Namayingo, Sarah Nakalungi, said the district disaster committee is to soon convene a meeting to discuss the fresh cholera outbreak.