One dead, 10 hospitalised in Budalangi over cholera outbreak

Saturday February 27 2016

Jane Apiyo washes her utensils at River Nzoia in Ulawi area. The water from the river is suspected to be responsible for the spread of cholera in the region. PHOTO | TOM OTIENO | NATION MEDIA GROUP.

Jane Apiyo washes her utensils at River Nzoia in Ulawi area. The water from the river is suspected to be responsible for the spread of cholera in the region. PHOTO | TOM OTIENO | NATION MEDIA GROUP. 

By LINET WAFULA
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One person has died while 10 others were hospitalised following a cholera outbreak in Budalangi Sub-County.

The Busia County's Health Chief Officer Asoka Itur said the number was likely to rise because there were more patients with cholera-like symptoms seeking treatment.

Dr Itur said lack of water in the area was the leading cause of the disease, adding that the cases were mainly from homes around River Nzoia.

“For the last one month, locals have not been supplied with clean water but the issue has been resolved. Most of the people in the region use water from River Nzoia, which is contaminated,” he said.

Dr Itur said they have admitted cases from Bunyala West, Sigiri, Sirisia, Magombe East, Rugunga and Mabinju.

The chief officer noted that the county government had banned eating at funerals to prevent the spread of the disease.

“We have also closed down all hotels, public eateries and cooking joints in the region,” he said, calling on locals to observe cleanliness and to drink treated water.

DIG TOILETS

Bunyala West MCA Chris Nakitare called upon residents to dig up toilets and stop keeping the dead for a long period.

“It is a medical requirement that victims of cholera should be buried immediately to avoid more infections,” he said.

Mr Nakitare appealed to the county administration to supply more drugs and health personnel at the hospital.

The health department has since deployed community health workers to create awareness about the disease, besides urging residents to work with county officers to prevent any further spread.

“We have [an] isolation ward at Port Victoria Hospital to deal with emerging cholera cases,” said Dr Itur.

Dr Itur added that the county government had started distributing chlorine to the affected homes as well as oral rehydration solutions to help patients regain body fluids.