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‘Anaemia, not strange disease, claimed Agency woman’s life’

The 25-year-old had a high fever and boils all over body at the time of death

A tribal woman, who died recently after suffering from a high fever and boils all over her body, was suffering from severe anaemia and not from any ‘strange disease’, doctors said on Friday.

Villagers suspected that Reddy Suseela (25) of Thokarayi village in GK Veedhi mandal was suffering from a mysterious illness after she developed boils all over her body and began running a high fever.

A doctor at the Darakonda Primary Health Centre referred her to the Chintapalli CHC. However, the woman died during transit.

Additional District Medical and Health Officer Leela Prasad attributed the death of the women to anaemia. “The high fever could have been due to malaria, which is common during the monsoon, and swelling of the body could be due to anaemia. It is estimated that 90% of the people in the Agency areas are anaemic. A survey of 5,000 schoolchildren, screened three years ago, revealed that 578 of them had sickle cell anaemia,” he said.

Dismisses rumours

Dr. Leela Prasad refuted rumours that some tribal people in Golugonda, Koyyuru and G.K. Veedhi mandals were dying of a mysterious illness that they contracted after being bitten by an insect. “I have seen the messages circulating on social media. There is no truth to it,” he clarified.

On the measures being taken to check the spread of malaria, the Additional DMHO said that a second round of spraying was completed. The spraying was done in 2,405 of the 3,800 habitations in the 11 Agency mandals. Habitations that were affected by malaria last year were selected for spraying, he said.

Villagers’ woes

Locals lamented that the health condition of tribals was in a precarious state. “Suseela had high fever and swelling all over her body. Doctors said it is anaemia, which is worrying because many tribals are at high risk for it. The closure of tribal welfare hostels during the last three months due to COVID-19 has deprived schoolchildren of nutritious meals. The pandemic has added to our woes,” said Killo Surendra, CPI(M) State Committee Member, who lives in the Agency.

“COVID-19 is also on the rise in the Agency, with 900 cases being reported from the 11 mandals so far. People coming from other places are infecting our people. Even some educated youths who are coming from outside are seen roaming without masks, whereas our people unfailingly wear them,” he said.

Several doctors in the Agency area were also affected by COVID-19. Paderu Area Hospital Superintendent Krishna Rao tested positive recently, and around six doctors and 10 nurses of the health department had also tested positive.

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