The health ministry in South Sudan’s Jonglei state has reported an outbreak of Kala-azar in its remote Akobo and Nyirol counties.
|A south Sudanese man recovers from the kala azar disease|
"We have heard of the upsurge of the disease in Langkien where a big number of people are affected. Other cases were reported in Akobo, but our health team [have’] not gained access to those locations,” a doctor at Bor civil hospital told Sudan Tribune on Sunday.
Kala-azar is a chronic and potentially fatal parasitic disease of the the internal organs, particularly the liver, spleen, bone marrow and lymph nodes transmitted by sandfly bites.
The disease is reportedly common in parts of Asia, Africa and South America, and causes an estimated half million cases per year.
Jonglei’s health minister, Angok Kuol confirmed the outbreak of the disease, saying medicines were dispatched the two affected counties.
"Recently there were reports of increasing cases of Kala-zar in Nyirol and Akobo counties. So we have sent in medicines, training materials and a consultant has even gone to help health personnel on the ground", said Kuol.
Jonglei ministry of health now relies on its partners to deliver health services in the areas controlled by rebels fighting against government.
"We have allowed all our partners who are operating in the counties under rebel to continue delivering health services,” said the minister.