KARACHI: Over 215,000 cases of watery diarrhoea, the highest number this year so far, were reported among children in Sindh in September.

According to the health department data released on Saturday, a total of 891,915 cases of diarrhoea were recorded in the province in the current year. Of them, a total of 219,707 cases were reported in September alone including 103,139 in children under five years and 116,568 in children above five years.

The disease claimed eight lives last month.

The stats showed that the province already burdened by watery diarrhoea cases since January saw a surge in the number of the illness as extraordinary monsoons were experienced in most districts.

Experts have also linked the high number of diarrhoeal diseases to heatwaves as germs responsible for causing these illnesses spread more in this weather. Also, during hot summer days, they say, consumption of water increases and potable water is not available to the masses, especially in the flooded parts of the province.

The province reported 19,323 diarrhoea cases in children under five years in March; 53,258 cases in April; 48,960 cases in May; 47,023 cases in June; 49,368 cases in July and 99,629 cases in August.

A total of 471,215 cases of diarrhoea were reported in children above five years in Sindh this year, out of which 17,957 cases were reported in March; 59,092 cases were reported in April; 58,362 cases were reported in May; 60,456 cases were reported in June; 56,385 cases were reported in July and 102,395 cases were recorded in August.

According to the health department officials, a major chunk of these cases were now being reported in the flood-affected areas where people were grappling with hunger and disease.

A total of 688,288 diarrhoeal cases were reported at the camps for internally displaced persons from July 1 to date.

Published in Dawn, October 2nd, 2022

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