Government to probe alleged heat wave deaths in Chikwawa

Ministry of Health and Population says it is yet to establish the causes of the deaths of four people in Chikwawa who allegedly died of heat wave.

A statement signed by Director of Health and Social Welfare in the ministry Dr Stalin Zinkanda said some of the deceased had other pre-existing medical conditions hence the need to find evidence based reasons for the deaths.

On October 28, 2019 the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services issued a statement on five day weather forecast for the country, where it predicted that temperatures have a high probability of exceeding 40 degrees Celsius.

As per prediction, the southern region registered temperatures as high as 44 degrees Celsius.

According to the statement, Chikwawa District Hospital started receiving a number of adults who presented with clinical features that are usually associated with heat exhaustion and also reported four deaths.

However, the office said some of the deceased had already some existing medical conditions hence the need to establish evidence based causes of the deaths.

“These patients were treated and discharged home. There have also been four reported deaths in the district; some of these cases had other preexisting medical conditions. Some were brought already dead.

“While we acknowledge that high temperatures might have contributed, our office is working to establish the exact cause of the deaths,” reads the statement.

Meanwhile, the office has urged people to adhere to necessary measures like uptake of many fluids, avoiding alcohol uptake among others.

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