Two more children are confirmed dead at Northern Provincial Hospital on Santo from severe dehydration, following the death of a child earlier at the Vila Central Hospital in Port Vila.

Dr Basil Leodoro, has confirmed the deaths this week from children who were suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea.

“These two deaths bring the total number of children dead from this diarrhoeal outbreak to three so far.

“But the wards and outpatients are getting stretched to the limit with more than 20 children being managed daily in our clinic,” he said.

The children’s outpatient clinic, run by Acting Nurse Practitioner, Jenny Nampas has been crowded with children with diarrhoea and vomiting.

“We are asking all parents in Vanuatu to bring their children to a health worker if they have vomiting and diarrhoea, more than 3 times a day, and to get referred to a hospital if there are any concerns,” says Dr Leodoro.

“The worst cases have come from the most remote areas of Santo, and including the outer islands, and nurses and doctors are being put on high alert.”

The message to the public is:

1. If the child is vomiting and has diarrhoea, more than three times in 24 hours, they must be reviewed by a health worker.

2. Health workers are advised to refer or consult Vila Central Hospital and Northern Provincial Hospital for the best treatment plan.

“We have doctors and nurses available to take calls and provide advice on sick children.

“There is an emergency line in VCH which is 112 or 22100.

“At Northern Provincial Hospital, health workers can contact Accident and Emergency on 7742448 or 7732177 to talk to a doctor or nurse.

“So far, the NPH children’s ward has treated over 25 in-patients with acute diarrhoea and vomiting.

“This outbreak is stretching our nursing and medical staff, because these children come in very dehydrated and weak, and often require hourly reviews to ensure that they recover,” Dr Leodoro advised. READ MORE