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Saturday, August 2, 2014

36 children die in Swaziland Rotavirus outbreak

“A rotavirus outbreak that has affected some 3,000 people in Swaziland over the past three weeks has resulted in 36 fatalities, according to a Swazi Observer news report today.


In an announcement by Prime Minister Sibusiso Dlamini, 3,042 cases of diarrhea due to rotavirus were treated in outpatient departments of hospitals countrywide. More than 500 children affected required hospitalization for their illness.

Dlamini assured the public that all treatment requirements for the management of the disease have been distributed to all facilities and health workers have been refreshed on case management and treatment guidelines. 

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), rotavirus disease is most common in infants and young children, but adults and older children can also become infected with rotavirus. It is responsible for the death of over 600,000 children annually worldwide. Once a person has been exposed to rotavirus, it takes about 2 days for symptoms to appear.”

Rotavirus hit the El Roi Baby Home too and it took its toll on three of our babies (Elisha, Seth and Roy).  For more than a week there was good news and bad news.  The good news was that earlier this year we were able to purchase vaccines against Rotavirus and vaccinate all of our babies between ages 2-4 months and NONE of those babies got sick.  The bad news is that not all of our babies come to us before 4-months of age and many others were past that age when we were able to buy the vaccines so that is why several got sick. Elisha and Seth recovered quickly as Brooke and her team of amazing Aunties focused on rehydration.  The bad news was that Roy was really sick (vomiting and diarrhea for more than a week) and just didn’t seem to be getting better.  On Friday I got a call that he had turned the corner to health and was doing so much better.  We dodged a bullet AND did it at our new infirmary (quarantine building) at the Children’s Campus while not incurring any costs from having to have our babies in the private hospital in town.

We give thanks to El Rofi (the God who heals) for healing all our babies. 

Live from Swaziland … we are doing a lot of extra hand washing.


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