Three die after diarrhoea outbreak in Meru

Friday December 29 2017

Anne Gacheri could not hold back her tears as

Anne Gacheri could not hold back her tears as she speaks to journalists after her mother-in-law died while being treated in hospital following due a of diarrhoea outbreak in Lairang'i village, Tigania West on December 29 2017. PHOTO | PHOEBE OKALL | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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A diarrhoea and vomiting outbreak in Meru has claimed three lives after two more patients died while undergoing treatment at the Meru Level Five Hospital.

An elderly man died on Wednesday at Lairang'i village while more than 25 people are admitted to hospital.

Mr Godfrey Karuti, a resident of Lairang’i, who had visited a relative at the Meru Level Five hospital said the two, a man and woman passed on Thursday.


"We are yet to get a report from the hospital on what caused their death. They were referred to the hospital after suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting. One of the deceased passed on in the afternoon. We are afraid that the disease may turn out to be Cholera," Mr Karuti said.

Acting Health Chief Officer Dr Kanana Kimonye confirmed that two people died of diarrhoea and vomiting complications while receiving treatment.

Residents have accused the county health department of being slow to respond to the outbreak escalating fears of Cholera.

On Wednesday when the Nation team visited Ruiri Catholic Mission Hospital, more than 15 people were receiving treatment at the facility.

According to David Samusi who is the nurse in charge at the facility, the first patient was received on December 19 before others started flocking in on Tuesday.


According to the relatives of the victims, the outbreak was a result of contamination from untreated water sources.

Mr Peter Muchui whose father Mr Julius Munya contracted the disease said they have been using water flowing through a fish pond.

“I suspect my father drunk untreated water and I think that was the main cause because the water we use at home flow through a fish pond,” he said.

Residents have been taking water from a stream flowing from a borehole in neighbouring Buuri Sub County.

Meru County health executive Eunice Kobia refuted claims that there is an outbreak of Cholera.

She maintained that only one person had died of amoebic dysentery.

Ms Kobia urged the residents not to worry as health personnel and public health officers have been dispatched to the affected areas.

“People should observe hygiene. They should boil water before drinking or washing their hands often," Ms Kobia said.