Respiratory viruses surge among flood-affected children in Wuper, Lakes state

A medical official has said there is a surge in acute respiratory infections among children whose families have been displaced by floods in Dor and Wuper, Lakes state.

Acute respiratory infection is an infection that may interfere with normal breathing. More than 20 children were reported to be battling the infections just last week alone.

The cases are common mostly among cattle-keeping families in Wuper – a cattle camp.

According to the County Health Department, there are not enough medicines to respond to the cases among children.

The area has reportedly not received any medical consignment between August and October 2022 since HealthPool Fund organization pulled out of Lakes state due to funding shortages.

Some of the people affected by the flood told Mingkaman 100 FM that the situation is dire.

“Children cough until they vomit. This worry us that it may not be a normal cough. We have been going to the health facility here but there are no drugs,” an IDP said.

Another said: “At Wuper Cattle camp here, it is a real challenge. People who were displaced have no shelter, children do not find warmth at night, you see them coughing and later on they start to vomit.”

James Manyiel Agup, the County Medical Officer said they can not help the children because the drugs supply that was expected to arrive in September delayed due to road inaccessibility.

“I will meet with the Disease Surveillance officer and we will assess those affected soon to establish the fact about this disease. It may be acute respiratory infection or severe Bronchiole pneumonia,” he stated.

According to a Rapid Needs Assessment conducted in early October, close to 30,000 individuals were displaced by flash flood in 11 villages of Awerial that include Marial, Atorok, Mabor-Chuei, Aguar-kuoth, among others.

Most of the IDPs are exposed to pneumonia, malaria and other waterborne diseases.