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Thursday October 21, 2021

Number of patients rises sharply at paediatric emergencies during recent heatwave

More than the usual number of children fell sick during the recent heatwave and last two days of the Eid-ul-Fitr in various parts of Sindh, experts and officials said on Friday.

They said a large number of children suffering from diarrhea (gastroenteritis), viral fever, upper respiratory tract infections and fever with fits were brought to the emergency rooms of different hospitals across the province during the last week when the temperature rose in almost all the cities of Sindh due to tropical cyclone Tauktae.

“There were many children who required immediate emergency treatment due to the intense heat and related illnesses. In Karachi, most of the children were brought to ChildLife Emergencies from Orangi Town, Nazimabad, Korangi, Lyari and Liaquatabad,” said Dr Irfan Habib.

Dr Habib, who is medical director, ChildLife Foundation, added that the heatwave badly affected children from May 10-18 and the incidents of paediatric diseases had risen sharply.

He advised the parents to keep their children at home and prevent them from unnecessary exposure to sunlight while plenty of water should be given to children of more than six months of age.

“Also, frequent hand-washing can keep your children safe from germs. If the child is feeling hot due to a high environmental temperature, try to rinse the face more often and avoid feeding them unhygienic food,” said Dr Habib.

In case, he added, if the condition of the child doesn’t improve at home, the family should consult a physician at the earliest. The health official maintained that the ChildLife Foundation was playing an important role in providing emergency treatment to children and the emergency rooms of foundation operational 24 hours a day.

The emergency rooms of the ChildLife Foundation are the result of a public-private partnership between the governments of Sindh and Balochistan.

The foundation’s emergency services at Civil Hospital Karachi, National Institute of Child Health, Sindh Government Hospital Korangi-5, Lyari General Hospital, Abbasi Shaheed Hospital, Peoples Medical College Hospital, Nawabshah, Chandka Medical College Hospital, Larkana, Liaquat University of Medical & Health Sciences, Hyderabad, Ghulam Muhammad Mehar Medical College Hospital, Sukkur, and Civil Hospital Quetta collectively received a total 22,000 children during the abovementioned days.

It is a public-private partnership and providing emergency medical care to children in Sindh and Balochistan. During the recent heatwave, the Child Life Foundation, through its 10 emergency rooms, provided timely medical care to children in Sindh and Balochistan near their homes, helping to save hundreds of lives.