News ID: 324261
Published: 0318 GMT September 21, 2022

Malaria spreading fast in flood-hit Pakistan: Officials

Malaria spreading fast in flood-hit Pakistan: Officials

A woman, displaced because of the floods, carry a boy and medicines, as she takes refuge in a camp, following rains and floods during the monsoon season in Sehwan, Pakistan, on September 20, 2022.

Malaria cases are rampant in Pakistan's flood-ravaged regions, with the death toll from diseases reaching 324, authorities said on Wednesday, adding that the situation may get out of control if required aid does not arrive soon.

Hundreds of thousands of people displaced by the floods are living in the open, and the stagnant floodwaters – spread over hundreds of kilometres which may take two to six months to recede – have led to widespread cases of skin and eyes infections, diarrhoea, malaria, typhoid and dengue fever.

The displaced families are exposed to swarms of mosquitoes and other hazards, such as snake and dogs bites.

They are in dire need of food supplies, shelter, medical assistance and medicines, which many complain have not been reaching them despite the efforts of the government and local and foreign relief organisations.

With Pakistan's already weak health system and lack of support, displaced families have complained of being forced to drink and cook with unsafe water.

Pakistan's Finance Ministry said it had approved 10 billion rupees ($42 million) for the disaster management agency to use for procuring flood relief supplies and other logistics.

The Sindh provincial government on Wednesday said makeshift health facilities and mobile camps in the flooded areas had treated more than 78,000 patients in the last 24 hours, and more than 2 million since July 1. Six of them died, it said.

Deaths from disease are not counted among the 1,569 people who were killed in flash floods, including 555 children and 320 women, the country's disaster management agency said on Wednesday.






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