Medic calls for calm over 'swine flu' threat
HEALTH & SCIENCEBy JACINTA MUTURA | Fri,Mar 16 2018 00:00:00 EATBy JACINTA MUTURA | Fri,Mar 16 2018 00:00:00 EAT
Hundreds of people with symptoms similar to those of swine flu are flocking to Nanyuki District Hospital for treatment.
County acting Chief Officer in Charge of Health Donald Mogoi said the hospital attends to more than 300 people with symptoms of swine flu in a day, after reports emerged last week that there was an outbreak of the disease in Nanyuki.
“A majority of residents panicked when we announced that there was an outbreak here and we have noticed many people, across all ages, are flocking to the hospital,” said Dr Mogoi.
However, the health officer urged people to be calm, saying they had managed to control the disease as many patients had been treated and discharged.
“Not everyone who is coming for treatment has symptoms of the flu. A majority are coming because of the scare but those with mild symptoms are treated and released,” he added.
He said the facility had treated and discharged about 1,400, with 15 patients who had severe symptoms being admitted for monitoring.
Last week, Mogoi announced that two patients had tested positive for the influenza after samples were taken to National Public Health Laboratories for analysis.
“The two patients were treated and they have already recovered,” said Mogoi.
By the time the outbreak was realised, the facility was attending to about 60 patients daily.
Mogoi urged residents to visit hospital in case they develop symptoms of the flu, which include red eyes, dry cough, sore throat, fever and general body weakness.
Two weeks ago, a six-year-old boy succumbed to suspected swine flu. Initially, the boy was admitted to Nanyuki Cottage Hospital after he developed fever. He was admitted for three days, but his condition worsened, prompting his parents to transfer him to Memorial Defence Hospital in Nairobi where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
Children, the elderly and those with compromised immunity are some of the most vulnerable.
The disease that attacks the lungs is spread through the air or body contact.
Public health officers have been going round schools and other social gatherings to sensitise locals to observe coughing etiquette and general body hygiene.
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