Report hints at measles outbreak behind Kemari deaths

The Nation  |  Jan 31, 2023

 Report hints at measles outbreak behind Kemari deaths

oxic gases emitted by some illegal factories and an outbreak of measles in the Mawach Goth area of Kemari District could be the prime reasons behind the alarming and mysterious deaths of several children, teenagers and adults during the last two weeks, said a report presented to Sindh CM Syed Murad Ali Shah.

The report compiled by health and environmental experts said the reason behind the deaths could be the outbreak of measles in Mawach Goth as not a single child was vaccinated against the disease. The report held Focal Persons of the Sindh health department responsible for ‘negligence’.

The report said that the special committee conducted interviews and tests of the people in Ali Muhammad Village, Mawach Goth.

 During the field investigation, 49 cases of measles were unearthed, the report said and further added that blood samples of 13 people were sent to NIH for further tests.

Air and water samples from two different spots in Ali Muhammad Village were also collected. 81% of the affected population is aged 11 years.

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The Sindh Health Department’s report also pinned blame on toxic chemicals that caused ‘interstitial lung disease’ leading to the deaths while referring to the complaints of emissions from factories causing the foul smell, throat irritation and suffocation.

Residents of Ali Muhammad Laghari Goth claimed that 19 people including 16 children have lost their lives ‘mysteriously’ during the last two weeks. Initially, they had symptoms of difficulty in breathing and within a few days, they died despite treatment from the local general practitioners.

The report submitted to Sindh CM has recommended anti-measles vaccination in the area and issuance of notice to the focal person over negligence.

The report has recommended further air tests by the Environmental Protection Department.

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