Jerip denies any cover-up in AGE outbreak
KUCHING: Democratic Action Party’s ( DAP) allegation about the state Health Ministry trying to cover up and downplay the seriousness of an outbreak of acute gastroenteritis (AGE) in Pusa is baseless and unfair, says Public Health Assistant Minister Datuk Dr Jerip Susil.
He said this when contacted on Wednesday for his response to a statement by Kelvin Yii who is the special assistant to Kota Sentosa assemblyman Chong Chieng Jen.
Yii had questioned why there was no public announcement to alert the public since the fi rst case was reported early this month in
Such work is done for residents who were exposed to such risk from Kampung Kalok and Kalok Resettlement Scheme, Kampung Godam, Kampung Hilir Pusa, Garak Longhouse, Munggu Menggeris, Pagu Longhouse, Meregang, Sabai Longhouse, 8th Mile, and Kampung Tengah Pusa, Betong.
Pusa, Betong and whether it was a cover up to hide the negligence of the government for its failure to address the need to replace old and faulty pipes there.
Jerip, who is Mambong assemblyman, said works have been carried out continuously for the whole month by related authorities since the first case was reported on March 3.
According to Jerip, the last report was received on March 26 (up until March 29) and the diarrhoea situation is expected to stop on March 31.
The population exposed to the contaminant is 8,291. The outbreak has caused one death with 30 people receiving outpatient treatment, and 12 requiring hospital admission.
On March 3, after receiving a report of diarrhoea cases among children from Kampung Kalok, Pusa, Betong from Pusa Clinic, healthcare officers immediately swung into action.
On the same day, healthcare officers from Betong District Health Office began active investigation and collecting information. They informed the residents and provided information and education about the disease and gave seminars to advise the people on prevention measures. Work had been carried out until March 28.
Jerip said: “Such work is done for residents who were exposed to the risk from Kampung Kalok and Kalok Resettlement Scheme, Kampung Godam, Kampung Hilir Pusa, Garak Longhouse, Munggu Menggeris, Pagu Longhouse, Meregang, Sabai Longhouse, 8th Mile, and Kampung Tengah Pusa, Betong.”
Banners printed with information about the disease and prevention steps were put up in affected areas to inform and guide the public.
Officers also did water sampling to analyse water quality and the result of the tests were sent to the Rural Water Supply Department for necessary actions.
Additionally, personnel from the district office and Rural Water Supply Department of Betong, people’s representatives, hospital directors, village chiefs and community leaders held meetings to discuss the problem.
Datuk Dr Jerip Susil, Public Health Assistant Minister
Datuk Dr Jerip Susil