Kunene feeds its malnourished

ONGWEDIVA - The Director of Health in Kunene Region Thomas Shapumba said malnutrition in Kunene is expected, given the prolonged years of drought stretching over five years.

We did not get adequate rainfall for some time. Even better regions that have had rainfall are experiencing malnutrition, said Shapumba.

However, Shapumba said many of the patients diagnosed with malnutrition are mostly of Angolan nationalities who flock to the region in search for jobs. Shapumba confirmed that they have cases of malnutrition, but said he was not at liberty to dwell on the statistics.

New Era last week reported death of a child as a result of malnutrition in Amarika in Omusati Region at the end of last month.

The paper is reliably informed that another child at the same village is reported to have died of malnutrition recently.

In addition to the deaths, several other children are said to be on treatment. Following the report last week, spectators claimed that the situation was much worse in Kunene; however, the director said it is expected, as there is no food due to the lack of rain over the years.

The director however said that the health directorate and the Kunene Regional Council have adopted an interim programme to give food to patients diagnosed with malnutrition once they have been discharged. We issue them with letters to give to their regional councillors' offices so that they can be given food, said Shapumba.

Shapumba's sentiments were confirmed by the Governor of Kunene Region Marius Sheya who said that the region is hard at work to ensure that the affected people get help promptly.

The director of health said the problem the region is facing is that some people tend to seek medical help when it is already too late, hence do not make it.

Despite ensuring that the affected people get food, the directorate through its social workers also do home visits once the patients have been discharged.

It also undertakes home visits in communities and where need be refer the families to the regional councillors' offices for food assistance.

Source: New Era