Nangarhar hospital lacks anti-rabies vaccine
JALALABAD (PAN): The main government-run hospital in eastern Nangarhar province has been grappling with an acute shortage of anti-rabies vaccine over the past one year, amid a surge in dog bite cases.
The Red Cross head for Nangarhar, Nangalai Yousafzai, said patients daily visited their office and complained about the non-availability of anti-rabies vaccine in the hospital.
He recalled a day earlier a woman brought her dog-bitten child to his office, saying she was poor and hospitals lacked the vaccine which she could not afford to buy from the market.
“This is not something new. Every day such patients are brought to our office,” Yousafzai said. “When I contacted a doctor at the civil hospital, he said they were without anti-rabies vaccines for the last one year,” he said, adding the virus was fatal if left untreated.
After all his efforts failed to find vaccine, he said he gave the woman money from his office fund to buy it for her child.
Patients who visited the civil hospital for emergency treatment missed the vaccine, a resident of the Kama district, Ihsanullah, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
He said he observed this when he brought her daughter to the hospital with dog bites few days ago, but he was told the vaccine was not available.
“Then I went to the bazaar and purchased the vaccine, but what about the poor who cannot buy it,” he asked.
An official at the Nangarhar Civil Hospital, Dr. Abdul Rashid Wafa confirmed the hospital lacked anti-rabies vaccine over the past one year.
He said several proposals and demands had been sent to the Public Health Ministry in this regard, but to no avail.
“The vaccine is expensive. That’s why no donor is ready to provide it,” he said, adding every summer they received up to 25 patients who had to buy the vaccine from the market.
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