BENTIU OCTOBER 6, 2015 (CISA) – “The malaria outbreak in Bentiu camp is exceptional in scope and has been claiming the lives of too many children,” Vanessa Cramond, the medical coordinator for Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has said.
“With the escalating morbidity and mortality witnessed in the under-five population, it is evident that another response strategy is needed to reach those most at risk of death,” she added.
United Nations Protection of Civilians Camp (PoC) in Bentiu South Sudan now houses 110,000 people who continue to flee fighting and violence.
The MSF hospital is the only hospital for the population in the camp. It provides emergency services 24 hours a day, intensive care for malnourished children, medical paediatric, adult care, surgical and maternity services.
In August and September 2015, MSF teams treated as many as 4,000 malaria patients every week.
As a result of malaria caseload compounded by limited access to basic healthcare and lack of early access to diagnosis and treatment of malaria, many children have been arriving to the hospital with severe malaria infection, reads the statement.
In recent weeks, an average of three children died from malaria every day, after arriving in critical condition.
In response, MSF and UNICEF has launched a door-to-door malaria treatment campaign to assess 30,000 children for suspected cases and providing 16,000 children between 6 months and 5 years with treatment.
“Our goal with this emergency response is to provide early access to malaria treatment to the most vulnerable segment of the population – children under five years old – before their condition deteriorates to the point that their lives are placed in serious jeopardy,” said Vanessa.