Gulmi diarrhoea: Coliform found in drinking water; authorities claim disease under controlColiform bacteria have been found in drinking water used by locals at Musikot Municipality-4, in Gulmi district, where, last week, around 150 people were taken ill, some seriously.
Coliform bacteria have been found in drinking water used by locals at Musikot Municipality-4, in Gulmi district, where, last week, around 150 people were taken ill, some seriously.
Laboratory test results show a high level of coliform in the water of the Nurkhola stream, whose water is consumed by villagers. According to health workers, coliform is found in human faeces and causes diarrhoeal infection.
Drinking Water and Sanitation Division in Gulmi collected drinking water samples and sent it to Palpa for lab tests. According to Prakash Neupane, engineer at the division office, 140 coliform colonies were found in 100 ml water collected from a water tank on April 23. “We have treated the water using chlorine and requested the locals to drink water only after boiling it,” said Neupane.
The local people of Badagaun in Musikot-4 started falling ill from last week, after complaining of diarrhoea, fever and headache. Health workers have been providing treatment in the affected area. A local, named Kumari Sinjali, 59, was taken to Bharatpur Medical College, as she got seriously sick. “The family members informed that her condition has not improved yet,” said Hari Chhantyal, a social worker.
Chief District Officer Yadunath Paudel said the spreading of the disease is now under control. “We are no longer receiving new patients. And the health of existing patients is gradually becoming normal,” he added.
As a precaution, authorities have banned the use of drinking water from Nurkhola, and the municipality has been distributing water through tankers. Each household was provided a carton of mineral water on Friday, according to Dr Bibek Kumar Lal, director of the Epidemiology and Disease Control Division. The division has also sent a separate team of health workers with necessary medicines to tackle the issue. A team of health workers deployed from the division is also tasked with collecting more samples of drinking water and patients’ stool for laboratory tests. The samples will be taken to Kathmandu to ascertain the cause of the infection.
A separate team of doctors, led by Dr Priyanka Shrestha, from the World Health Organization, also reached the affected area on Saturday.
Diarrhoea is a major public health problem in Nepal, as every year thousands of people throughout the country get infected with diarrhoeal infection, especially in the monsoon season.
Dozens of people in Jajarkot died and hundreds were infected with a diarrhoea outbreak in 2009. Contaminated water and food is considered to be a major culprit for diarrhoeal infection.