Tutong - Eradicating 'lymphatic filarial,' locally known as 'penyakit untut,' is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Health in caring for the health of the residents of Brunei Darussalam.
The Acting Director of Environmental Health cum Chairman of the National Lymphatic Filarial Eradication Programme, Dr Hajah Anie Haryani Haji Abdul Rahman, yesterday revealed some of the measures the ministry is taking to eradicate the disease (estimated to affect 120 million people in over 80 countries worldwide) at the launch of the Eradication of Lymphatic Filaria Programme which played out at the Lamunin Health Centre in Tutong District.
"Four Mukims in the country have an infection rate of more than one per cent. The World Health Organisation (WHO) believes that Brunei will be able to carry out efforts to eradicate the disease through a specific eradication programme. The WHO has also advised Brunei to focus eradication efforts on eight Mukims only," Dr Hjh Anie Haryani said.
The programme Brunei is implementing is the Mass Drug Administration (MDA).
"This programme involves the intake of two drugs, namely albendazole and diethylcarbamazine (DEC), by the residents in the affected areas. These drugs kill the worms that are believed to be the culprit behind the infection," added Dr Hjh Anie.
Present as the guest of honour at the event was Minister of Health Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Awg Hj Adanan bin Begawan Pehin Siraja Khatib Dato Seri Setia Awg Hj Mohd Yusof, who later handed out posters to raise public awareness, particularly among those residing in affected areas, to penghulus and village heads of Mukims and villages respectively.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin