Experts for proper hygiene to reduce worm-related disease in children


DHAKA, Oct 22, 2018 (BSS) – Experts in the country have emphasized on proper sanitation and hygiene to reduce worm-related diseases in children.

“Proper sanitation and hygiene practices such as washing hands properly after visiting toilets or before and after meals are important to reduce the spread of worm-related diseases,” Directorate General of Director General of Health Services (DGHS) Professor Dr Abul Kalam Azad told BSS.

Bangladesh has achieved remarkable success in reducing worm-related diseases through administering deworming medicines twice a year by the, Health and Family Welfare Minister Mohammed Nasim told BSS.

“Diarrhoea, gas, upset stomach, greasy stools and dehydration are the common worm-related disease in our country,” Senior Scientific Officer of the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) A S M Alamgir told BSS.

A survey, conducted by the DGHS in 2015, said only 8.28 per cent children were affected by the soil-transmitted helminthes (STH) disease which contributes to anemia, malnourishment and impaired mental and physical development.

“But, the country had a burden of STH in 2005 when 79.8 per cent of children were affected by the disease,” Prof Azad said.

“The early years of a child are the most significant. I am confident that if every children aged between 5 to 16 years can be brought under the deworming coverage, they will have improved health outcomes and be able to achieve their potential to the fullest,” the DGHS chief said.

Timely, high quality, mass-based deworming programme, regularly organised by the government for children of pre-school and school-going children in the country, dramatically reduced the harm caused by parasitic worm infections, he added.

School students are the most vulnerable to worm infection, but awareness about hygiene and use of sanitary latrine together with proper hand washing before taking every meal can prevent infection of worm-related diseases, said the experts.