Bilharzia is Ignored but Posses Grave Danger in This Village

Though not much attention has been given to Bilharzia which is among many neglected tropical diseases, its  posing a threat to a bigger population in Migori County and more particularly in Suna West and Nyatike sub counties.

The recent survey done by the county department of health which was immediately followed by deworming excercise revealed that 25 percent of the people living in Migori county are suffering from Bilharzia.

According to Suna West sub county public health officer Peter Nyang, high cases of bilharzia reported in the sub county is as a result of the use of untreated water from river Ongoche which is highly infested the bilharzia.

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Having noted that many people were having bilharzia in the region following the tests done, Nyang said all individuals in the areas affected by the diseases were given deworming pills.

However, the questions that many ask is how effective is the deworming process if the people will continue to use the water from river Ongoche which is the main water source in the area.

A spot check done by Kenya Newspaper in areas of Manyera and Piny Oyie in Suna West established that majority of the people still continue to use the water from River Ongoche which is infected with bilharzia even after they were found with bilharzia and were given deworming bills.

Bilharzia pills

George Otieno who was at the river when we made the visit said they do not have any alternative source of water and therefore they have to continue using the water from the river.

His sentiments were echoed by Mr and Mrs Anjero who said that the best solution to control the diseases is by providing clean water to the locals.

In an interview area Assistant chief Jacob Nyarube said controlling the disease without providing clean water was a task in futility.

However, he said as administrators, they are sensitizing locals also how they can remain safe.

Suna West Sub county public health officer Nyang said the department is also out to sensitize the locals on how they can be safe. He said the deworming exercise will be done annually.

Migori county Neglected tropical diseases coordinator Nicholous Makworo said their statistics indicated that 25 percent of the people living Migori county have been affected with Bilharzia.

He said Nyatike and Suna West sub counties are the  hardest hit by bilharzia.

Makworo said they already have an action plan on how they are going to deal with the diseases adding that they are soon doing a validation survey.


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