One more dead as Lamu health office confirms dysentery outbreak

Lamu County Health Executive Dr. Mohamed Kombo. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Lamu, KENYA: One more person has succumbed to a Dysentery outbreak in Pandanguo village of Lamu county.

The 14 year old boy identified as Abdalla Said succumbed shortly after arrival at the Pandanguo dispensary on Monday evening.

Last Saturday, an 8 year old boy identified as Yahya Swaleh Bakari also died from the dysentery outbreak.

At least 20 more people have been admitted at the Witu hospital and Pandanguo dispensary after exhibiting symptoms of dysentery that includes vomiting and excreting blood.

The latest victim in the outbreak is said to have succumbed just hours after he took ill and was rushed to the health facility.

Confirming the deaths in Lamu on Monday,Lamu county health executive Mohamed Kombo said a team health officers had already been dispatched to contain the situation at the village.

Earlier on at the onset of the outbreak,blood and stool samples obtained from some of the patients had been sent to the government chemist in Mombasa to ascertain the illness behind the rampant cases of vomiting and diarrhea that had initially been reported.

Kombo however said the results were back and that the samples had tested positive for Dysentery.

“We have now ascertained that the outbreak is dysentery which seems to have been brought about due to consumption of dirty contaminated water by those in drought hit areas like Pandanguo. We have sent our team to the ground to contain the situation and we expect things to be better soon,” said Kombo.

He said the health department had also embarked on treating boreholes,wells and other sources of water in order to curb a similar outbreak.

Kombo said the dispatched team of health workers as also been mandated to move from house to house and distribute water treatments among villagers.

Locals have complained of inadequate attention from the doctor and the other health officers assigned to the village since they have to close work early due to security concerns in the area.

“The doctor and the other officers report to work at 9am then close up by 3pm. Unfortunately for us,that’s when we really need them as many people get sick especially at night,then we have no way to help the sick. If they really want to help they should do this around the clock after all its an outbreak we are talking about,” said Adan Golja,the village headman.

Pandanguo village is home to over 2000 residents from the Boni minority group.