Even as the villagers are coming to grips with severe water crisis, the outbreak of diarrhoea, commonly known as Gastroenteritis (GE), has dealt a double blow. Medical records say 57 people had been affected, out of them 25 admitted in various hospitals. People from surrounding habitations were also getting jittery over the likely spread of GE.
As one enters the village, hub of activity was a make-shift medical camp at the Village Panchayat Office. A lone lady doctor who works at the sub-centre was handling all the patients.
Five-year-old Byragula Pushparaj had to be physically carried to the camp. Both his parents had left for work leaving the boy behind. He had been vomiting and having loose motions for the last three days. After administering IV fluids, the doctor sent him to Primary Health Centre at Piduguralla in a 108 ambulance. The village has no PHC and the sub centre does not have facilities for treating patients.
The outbreak of G.E was only to be expected in a village where people draw water from a highly contaminated watertank spread over five acres. Water from this tank percolates into a deep well near by from which water was being pumped to overhead service reservoir.
“We are forced to drink water from this well as the four bore wells in the village had gone dry,” rues a resident Gurram Venkateswara Reddy. His daughter, Vijayalakshmi, an MBA student was too affected by GE. She was treated for three days at a private hospital in Piduguralla.
Tank not cleaned
The tank had not been cleaned for past several years. Hyacinth growth, use of water for washing clothes and animals too had contaminated it.
“Cleaning the tank at a cost of Rs.3 lakh was included in the list of works to be taken up in the next phase of NREGP. We will complete the work by the end of June so that the tank was replenished with the rain water,” said Mandal Development Officer G. Siva Prasad.
Keywords: Health conditions