30 Apr 2007

PNG's Eastern Highlands fights deadly malaria outbreak

1:45 pm on 30 April 2007

Goroka Hospital in Papua New Guinea's Eastern Highlands province says it's working with provincial health officials to treat those affected by a deadly malaria outbreak in the area.

The outbreak in the Lufa area has claimed at least 10 lives and seen around 600 hospitalised for treatment.

Goroka hospital CEO, Joseph Apa, says provincial health centres are treating the bulk of those affected by the outbreak in the past fortnight.

He says his facility has successfully treated a number of people with malaria complications like renal failures and dehydration.

"We have two physicians on the ground and also in that area medical officers posted to that area; and also, the national department response was good - they sent an officer from the Malaria division in the department of health to come here last week, he was here organising everything and so everything, I think, is controlled now."

Health officials have suggested that the outbreak has been caused due to continuous rain in the region since last month.