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Anemia Kills 105 in Gulu City in Six Months

According to the district’s Health Sector Review report, a total of 62 deaths by anemia in Gulu city were recorded among children under five years, while 43 occurred in patients aged five and older.
23 Mar 2021 11:06

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At least 105 people in Gulu city have died of anemia from the various health units over the last two quarters, making it the number one cause of death, at 8.5 percent of the fatalities.

 

Out of those who died of anemia, 65 were male while 40 were female.   Elvis Okello Romanson, the biostatistician at Gulu District Health said that Gulu City recorded these figures from July 2020 to January 2021. 

  

According to the district’s Health Sector Review report, a total of 62 deaths by anemia in Gulu city were recorded among children under five years, while 43 occurred in patients aged five and older. But in Gulu district, only a child under five years, died of anemia.

  

“There is fairly equal distribution of causes of mortality across diagnoses with anemia being the number one cause of death in Gulu city,” the report read in part.  

Stella Atim, the officer in charge of the pediatric unit at Gulu Regional Referral Hospital, told Uganda Radio Network that there are many causes of anemia, such as malaria, road accidents, abortion, deliveries and some infections. 

  

//Cue in: “It can be due to…”   

Cue out: …loss of blood.”//  

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, Gulu regional blood bank has been struggling to raise enough blood for hospitals and health units.

  

Most blood used to be collected from schools and other learning institutions, but the pandemic forced government to close these learning centers and they are still reopening in phases. 

  

In February 2020, several residents in the then Gulu municipality carried out a peaceful demonstration over shortage of safe blood.  Armed with placards, the residents demanded that government increases funding to the health sector to ensure availability of safe blood for all citizens who need it. 

The demonstration followed reports of several maternal deaths in various health units across the country, due to shortage of blood.   

Attempts by this reporter to get the extent of blood shortage from officials at the Gulu regional blood bank failed, as one official kept passing the buck to another and back and forth. 

  Ends