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Health officials attribute mysterious Fangak death to Malaria.

By Simon Deng
South Sudan’s health ministry says the fast-spreading illness which has now killed 89 people in Jonglei state is attributed to Malaria.
“It is worth noting that this time of the year, malaria is expected to surge and if not promptly treated, it may lead to deaths, the ministry of health would like to reassure the public that the reported illness is upsurge of malaria due to flooding situation and all measures are being taken to improved health service delivery in Fangak,” said Samson Paul Baba, Acting undersecretary in South Sudan’s Health Ministry.
Jonglei state and aid agencies say they have deployed a team of health experts comprising of epidemiologists, surveillance officers, clinical officers and laboratory experts to conduct a fact finding mission and analyze the situation on the ground.
The state government says the initial findings indicate high rate for malaria among those tested at private clinic and Pakaan Primary Health Care Centre.
The health ministry and the World Health Organization also deployed a rapid response task force to investigate the illness.
The World Health Organisation says initial samples of the sick people have returned negative for cholera.
The region was recently hit by severe flooding.
“On 8 December 2021, a follow-up mission by ministry of health’s rapid response team was deployed for further investigation. According to the investigation report the team could not verify the 89 deaths reported by the local authorities, however, the investigation found an upsurge of malaria cases in the area. The team reported occurrence of illness in the community presenting symptoms and signs of malaria (fever, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite, in one health facility, out of 162 cases, 79 (49 percent) were reported as malaria,” said the acting undersecretary in the health ministry.
the report by local authority indicates that the disease is affecting mostly elderly and children aged 1-14 years and reported symptoms included diarrhea, high fever, joint pain, vomiting ,body weakness loss of appetite and chest pain.

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