More than 200 children in the district contracted cold and cold-related illnesses in the past month
The number of patients, mostly children, suffering from cold-related illnesses including diarrhoea, pneumonia, and shortness of breath is rising in Sunamganj.
In the last seven days, 154 people were treated for diarrhoea and 104 children were treated for pneumonia and respiratory diseases at Sunamganj Sadar Hospital. Among them five children succumbed to pneumonia and shortness of breath.
According to the district civil surgeon's office, more than 200 children in the district contracted cold and cold-related illness in the past month.
On Sunday, 47 patients were admitted to the diarrhoea ward and 41 children to the pneumonia ward of the Sunamganj Sadar Hospital.
On an average, 29 children and adults are admitted to the diarrhoea ward every day.
Locals said their children were contracting cold-related illnesses due to the sudden onset of winter and to make things worse, there was a shortage of necessary medicines at the Sunamganj Sadar Hospital.
Samir Uddin, of Balakanda village in Surma union of Sadar upazila, said: “My daughter suddenly got ill and I took her to the hospital as she developed fever and shortness of breath. Even though it is not cold during the day, the temperature drops significantly at night.”
Abu Talib, of Ratargaon village in Bishambharpur upazila, said children from poor households were being affected more by cold-related diseases as many cannot afford to buy winter clothes.
Sohag Miya of Jagairgaon village in Sadar upazila, said” “Many medicines aren’t available at the Sunamganj Sadar Hospital and so they have to be bought from pharmacies outside.”
Dr Shams Uddin, Sunamganj district Civil Surgeon, said: “The temperature has started dropping significantly at night and due to the lack of prevention measures, the number of cold-related cases is rising in the district, especially among the poorer community.”
He advised taking special care of children and the elderly at this time. Parents aren’t aware of their children getting sick with cold-related illnesses and these children are brought in late after they’ve gone through diarrhoea, fever and vomiting.
Regarding the death of five children at the Sadar hospital, he said:“There was no negligence on the part of our doctors and there is no shortage of medicine at the hospital either. After the children fell ill, their parents did not immediately seek help from the hospital. Instead, they sought pseudo treatment elsewhere and admitted the children in very critical states when it was too late.
“The hospital has adequate oxygen supply and if they had come to the hospital with the children in time, the lives of the children could have been saved.”