Materia Medica Malaysiana

May 18, 2007

Penan kids now get measles jabs at six months

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 10:45 am

Star: KUCHING: Following an outbreak that killed 18 Penan children two years ago, the state health authorities now give measles immunisation to Penan infants when they are six months old.
This is three months earlier than for other children, said state Assistant Public Health Minister Dr Soon Choon Teck.
He added that most cases occurred in communities with low immunisation coverage.
“Besides, these Penans live in cramped and unsanitary conditions with neither proper latrines nor piped water,” he told Liwan Lagang (BN – Belaga) during question time.
Dr Soon said 75% of Penan children below seven years had been immunised against measles, considered a severe disease among very young and malnourished children.
He said that in the outbreak two years ago, one death was recorded at the Bintulu Hospital while the others occurred at Penan settlements in Long Urun, Long Menapa and Long Singu in the Murum and Asap areas.
Of 161 children admitted to the Bintulu Hospital, 154 were Penans. The others were Kayans, Kenyahs and Ibans.
Dr Soon said that after the outbreak, medical teams carried out mass immunisation for all Penan children and all school children in Belaga, Kapit and Bintulu.
Assistant Urban Development and Tourism Minister Hamden Ahmad told Violet Yong (DAP – Pending) that the state government had approved RM23.6mil and the federal government RM8.2mil for subsistence payments to the poor and needy statewide this year.
He said more than 12,000 public assistance recipients would receive over RM25mil while financial aid worth RM1.1mil would be given out to children, RM4.8mil to the aged and RM500,000 to disabled workers.

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