Measles cases on the rise in eastern provinces
JALALABAD (PAN): There has been an unprecedented increase in the number measles cases among children in eastern provinces, where no vaccination drive has been carried out over the past five years, health officials in Nangarhar said on Monday.
Public Health Director Dr Baaz Mohammad Sherzad told Pajhwok Afghan News a total of 243 cases were registered in 2010, but the number increased to 706 in 2011.
Sherzad said of the cases 700 were registered during the first four and a half months of the current year at public health hospitals. The patients are less and more than five years of age.
The director projected the number of cases by end of the year at 3,000, saying no vaccination campaign had been carried out in the four provinces over the past many years.
After their repeated demands, the Ministry of Public Heath finally promised providing anti-measles vaccines and tetanus to Nangarhar, Kunar, Laghman and Nuristan provinces at the earliest with support from the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF), he added.
A senior medical officer at the provincial hospital Dr Nasir Kamawal said measles was an infectious disease which spread in body due to weakness and deficiency of vitamin-A. “We have no specific treatment facility for the disease at the hospital,” he said.
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