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Triple Threat: Rise of Polio, Rift Valley Fever and Red Eye Disease Spark Fear in This Country

Kenya Seeing Resurgence of Polio, Red Eye Disease Outbreaks
Source: MEGA

Kenya is seeing an outbreak of polio, RVF, and Red Eye Disease.

Feb. 7 2024, Published 9:08 a.m. ET

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Kenya is currently grappling with a resurgence of polio, Rift Valley Fever (RVF) and Red Eye Disease, raising concerns within the administration.

The origins of these diseases, particularly polio, have been traced to neighboring countries, with a river in the Great Rift Valley causing significant flooding in Kenya and subsequently leading to a notable increase in the mosquito population.

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The surge in these diseases is directly linked to the rise in mosquitoes resulting from the flooding. Notably, fourteen cases of polio have been identified in the Garissa and Eastleigh regions, indicating ongoing community transmission.

Additional cases have been confirmed in various countries, including Angola, Benin, Chad, Ivory Coast, DR Congo, Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Yemen and Zimbabwe.

The Kenyan government is taking proactive measures to address the situation. Isaac Mwaura, a government spokesperson, stated that the National Public Health Emergency Operations Centre has been activated, and an incident management system with thematic subcommittees has been established for coordinated efforts, according to Citizen Digital.

To combat the outbreak, the government has undertaken three rounds of Supplementary Immunization Activity (SIA), covering 7,683,235 children in various counties.

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Mwaura emphasized the importance of preventive measures, including handwashing, disinfection of belongings and self-isolation for those contracting the diseases.

Regarding Red Eye Disease, Mwaura advised citizens to use a wet face towel for minor symptoms and seek medical assistance for severe cases, highlighting its highly contagious nature.

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Additionally, confirmed cases of Rift Valley Fever in North Horr, Marsabit County, have been linked to increased mosquito populations due to El Nino rains.

All counties are on high alert, with preventive measures including avoiding uninspected meat, using protective equipment during animal births and the distribution of over 1.2 million insecticide-treated mosquito nets nationwide.

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The coastal regions, particularly Mombasa, Lamu and Malindi, have witnessed outbreaks of Red Eye Disease, prompting the government to stress caution and the importance of seeking medical attention when necessary.

Despite the eradication of polio in certain countries by the end of the 20th century, the disease remains a challenge in various parts of the world, underlining the global effort needed to combat its resurgence.


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