Measles claims one more in Hoima, brings death toll to 5

Wednesday February 13 2013

By Francis Mugerwa

The death toll of people who have succumbed to measles in Hoima has increased to five, following the death of a three-year-old at the weekend, district officials have said.

The deceased passed way at Kaseeta Health Centre.
The district health inspector, Mr Fredrick Byenume, said his office had recorded a total of 141 cases since measles broke out two months ago in Kabwooya Sub-county.

The area district councillor, Mr Vincent Opio, said there were more people dying in communities with symptoms similar to measles.
Mr Opio said Sayuni, Kabegaramire, Nyairongo, Rwenkobe, Ibahura, Karokarungi, Dongo, Rwengabi and Nyakabaale villages were between five to 14 kilometres away from the centre, the only government facility in Kaseeta parish treating measles cases.

“People are having difficulty to access Kaseeta Health Centre which is about five to 10 kilometres away from various villages,” he said.
Mr Opio said residents wondered why the government had not yet conducted a mass immunisation drive in the area.

“Schools have opened. Children, who may be infected with the disease, could be mixing up with those yet to contract the epidemic. This may worsen the infection rates,” he said.

Mr Byenume, however, said plans were underway to start a mass immunisation outreach in the affected communities starting this weekend.
The measles epidemic, which broke out in this district in January in Kabwooya, is reportedly spreading to neighbouring Kiziranfumbi and Kyangwali sub-counties.

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Medical experts say all measles patients are below five years of age.
The epidemic has so far claimed three children between the ages of two and 10 and Night Petralina, 35, a resident of Nyanseke Village.

fmugerwa@ug.nationmedia.com

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