3 kids die in evacuation sites for Davao fire victims

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/24 April) — A disease caused by unsanitary conditions has claimed the lives of three children in two evacuation sites for victims of the fire that occurred early this month, the City Health Office said.

The first reported death was that of a 4-year-old child in Zonta Elementary School who died of sepsis, an infection caused by unsanitary environment, a day after the April 4 fire.

Witnesses said the child and father jumped into the brackish water in the seaside sitio to escape the blaze, which caused the victim to drink plenty of dirty water.

The CHO also recorded the death of a two-year-old who succumbed to measles in Magsaysay Park, which was converted into an evacuation center for fire victims, according to documents released by the Task Force Isla Verde.

Symptoms of measles, a highly communicable disease, include rashes, red eyes and loss of appetite that usually last 7-10 days. It is spread via direct contact or through the air by coughing and sneezing.

Measles also claimed the life of a seven-month-old infant in Magsaysay Park.

City health officer Josephine Villafuerte said they already conducted immunization and outbreak controls when they learned about the case.

“Children susceptible to the disease were inoculated with vitamin A,” she said.

The infant was rushed by 911 medical rescuers to the hospital prior to the fire but was claimed by her parents to live with them in the evacuation center, where the infant’s condition reportedly deteriorated.

The evacuees are currently staying in five elementary schools, two gymnasiums and the park.

According to CHO data, as of April 15, children from the eight evacuation centers also suffered cases such as acute respiratory infection, open wounds, bruises, burns, and fever.

Over 350 children suffered respiratory infections, 207 of whom were below five years old.

Wounds accounted for 106 cases fever 133 cases.

Acute diarrhea, animal bites, measles and conjunctivitis were also recorded. (MindaNews)