Conditions worsen in northeast Kenya as more reports of dengue fever come in
Sep 29, 2011
Dengue fever in Mandera, Kenya continues to spread at an alarming rate as lack of medical facilities and personnel plague the area, IRIN reports.
More than 5,000 people are infected with the disease and the number will continue to rise under the current circumstances. There is only one public hospital and a a few private practices in the town - all of which have become overrun with residents with dengue fever.
"Mandera District Hospital is congested, many patients and panicked residents are streaming into the facility, it's the only public hospital, all wards are occupied above capacity," Mohamed Sheikh, the provincial public health and medical officer, told the news outlet.
With a lack of specific treatment for dengue fever, Sheikh told the publication that doctors, nurses and humanitarian workers have been trying their best to supply people suffering with what they can. This includes fever-reducing drugs, liquids for those dehydrated and antibiotics for people suffering from infections.
Poor sanitation in the area has provided a breeding ground for mosquitoes, which carry and transmit the disease. Health workers are attempting to improve sanitation to combat the outbreak.
"Elimination of mosquitoes by chemical spraying is the surest, [most] reliable approach to eliminate the spread of dengue fever; it's easily contracted from a single bite, mosquito nets cannot guarantee full prevention," Sheikh told the news outlet.