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Measles outbreak leaves 16 children dead in Kyenjonjo

By Mary Karugaba

Added 26th March 2019 07:22 PM

According to the World Health Organisation, the disease kills an estimated 2.6 million people yearly

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State Minister of health Dr Joyce Moriku speaks during plenary about the outbreak in Kyenjojo. Photo by Timothy Murungi

According to the World Health Organisation, the disease kills an estimated 2.6 million people yearly

Sixteen children have died of measles in Kyenjojo district following the outbreak of the disease last month.

Mwenge North MP Lawrence Akugizibwe told Parliament on Tuesday that five counties in the district have suffered the outbreak and the ministry of health has not yet sent a team to contain the disease.

“The problem is serious but the ministry has not yet sent a team to intervene. We want the minister to explain and also tell us their plan. We want the children immunized,” he said.

State Minister of health Dr Joyce Moriku said the ministry is aware of the outbreak and a team is still studying the situation.

“We are aware and the team is doing sensitization and investigations. But we shall present a comprehensive report on the case,” she said as MPs rejected her explanation.

MP William Nzoghu wondered that instead of the minister sending a team to contain the problem, they are still investigating the outbreak.

“What will the investigations do? These are people’s children that are dying. Instead of telling us the actions taken, you are talking of a report, a report to do what?” he asked.

Moriku explained that last a year, a comprehensive statement was presented in Parliament on measles and action plan was put in place.  

Oulanyah asked Moriku to present a comprehensive statement on the case.

In May last year, the Ministry of Health announced an outbreak of measles in 26 districts across the country.

According to the Health minister Jane Aceng, the most affected districts were Amuru in northern Uganda, Kamuli, Mbale, and Butebo in the east of the country.

She said government, in collaboration with development partners, would carry out mass immunization of all children under five years against the disease.

Measles is an acute and highly contagious viral disease that occurs primarily in children and is marked by runny nose, dry hacking cough, conjunctivitis, or swollen eyelids and inflamed eyes, watery eyes, and photophobia, or sensitivity to light.

Other symptoms include sneezing, a reddish-brown rash, very small greyish-white spots with bluish-white centres in the mouth, insides of cheeks, and throat as well as generalised body aches.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) the disease kills an estimated 2.6 million people yearly.

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