Alvine Kapitako Windhoek There are fears that hepatitis E in Havana and Goreangab informal settlements could become endemic, according to epidemiologist, Dr Lilliane Kahuika, of the Ministry of Health and Social Services. The number of cases recorded since the outbreak in October last year are 113, she said. Last week, 44 cases of hepatitis E were recorded and ten deaths since the outbreak. “That is a slight increase since week 13 which recorded 38 cases,” added Kahuika. “We have observed a plateau in the overall trend of cases over the past few weeks which is an indication of ongoing low level transmission. This is a concern in the sense that hepatitis E could become endemic in the affected areas,” said the epidemiologist. She stressed the need for continued strengthening of multi-sectoral collaboration as well as community engagement in order to win the battle against the endemic that seems to affect poor neighbourhoods. Khomas Governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua, who spoke at the commemoration of World Health Day on Saturday, applauded the efforts made so far to contain the disease. “Allow me to congratulate the broad community of stakeholders for the ongoing concerted efforts to contain this unexpected challenging outbreak which has a serious impact on the livelihoods of our communities in the region,” stated the Khomas governor. Speaking to the theme of the event “universal health coverage: everyone, everywhere,” Mcleod-Katjirua noted that in Khomas the majority of marginalised Namibians are unable to obtain essential health services. However, no one should have to choose between death and financial hardships. “No one should have to choose between buying medicine and buying food,” she added.
2018-04-12 09:33:00 5 months ago