Health dept ‘sleeps over Jaundice outbreak” in Srinagar outskirts
Residents of Fakir Gujri area on the outskirts of Srinagar on Wednesday complained of a massive outbreak of jaundice among children.
Reports said over 200 children of the area have fallen sick with a disease that appears to be jaundice. "They (affected children) have a yellow tinge in eyes and all over skin. They suffer from fever, diarrohea and pain in abdomen," a resident Rafiq Ahmed told Greater Kashmir.
However, in absence of a doctor, and a laboratory to confirm the disease as jaundice, the locals have pinned all their hopes on a local pharmacist and faith healers.
"We are taking our children to peer sahib," said a local whose all five children have taken ill with the disease.
Health authorities expressed ignorance about the issue and said that the matter will be 'checked'.
There is a sub-center in Fakir Gujri, directly under the control of GMC Srinagar.
Principal Medical College Srinagar, Dr. Kaiser Ahmed said that he would look into it. "I do not have information about it but will check what the matter is. It will be resolved," he said.
Dr. Sumir Ji Mattoo, Director Health Services Kashmir said that since Fakir Gujri is monitored by GMC Srinagar, it is not the responsibility of DHSK. "Still we will send our team to the area tomorrow to see what the matter is," he said.
As per reports, no doctor is available in Fakir Gujri or its viscinity. A doctor, who used to visit the area in past has also stopped visiting the area.
Dr. Salim Khan, HoD Social and Preventive Medicine who is In-charge of the health system in the area said, "The area has a sub-center, it is not supposed to have a doctor."
He stated that GMC sends a PG student to the area twice a week. "We have not received any information of any outbreak from our doctor," he said.
He added that the area with a population of 1700 people has Harvan as the nearest PHC.
The hamlet has no access to water supply as all the taps in the area run dry, the residents said.
People consume water from springs but don't believe that water could be responsible for the outbreak of jaundice, a water-borne disease.
"Our children have fallen ill. They take meals from Anganwari centers and that is what is not of standard quality," said Rafeeq Ahmed.