FAISALABAD: The health department officials seem to be groping in the dark as chickenpox claimed another life on Wednesday.
Maqsood Ahmed, 45, who resided at Chak 242-JB, Bhawana expired at the Allied Hospital on Wednesday — a day after he was brought from the THQ hospital where he remained under treatment for two days.
During the last more than one month, twenty people have died of the infectious disease which is very much curable. Many health practitioners in rural areas, it seems, fail to diagnose the disease or prescribe precautionary measures and proper medication resulting in complications.
Commissioner Momin Ali Agha says the health department officials have been asked to make isolation beds functional at the Tehsil Headquarters hospitals and the basic health units (BHUs) and ensure provision of equipment and medicines. He also directed them to get the data of the chickenpox patients from the private hospitals.
Imran Rafi and his two children — Khadija, 7, and three-year-old son Mohammad Ali — are suffering from chickenpox. Mr Rafi claims one doctor suggested them to take a bath whereas another asked him to strictly stay away from water.
Doctors at the Allied Hospital told Dawn that many general practitioners and the medical officers (MO) at the THQ hospitals, rural health centres and BHUs fail to diagnose the disease and prescribe wrong medicines to patients who end up facing life-threatening complications. They said the health facility had received a number of patients who contracted the virus from any member of the family or neighbour.
On Wednesday last, they said, Niamat Ali, 30, of Ghala Mandi, Dijkot Road was admitted to the hospital. His two daughters and a son also were suffering from the disease. Similarly, doctors said, an FSc student at a private college, Iqra Tahir, 18, of Chak 286-JB, Gojra was brought to the hospital on Tuesday last. Her six family members were already infected and nobody bothered to vaccinate the family, they added.