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Penang acts to fight JE menace

 | July 1, 2014

The state health authority has taken samples from the swine population and fogged strategic spots.

je_kid_300GEORGE TOWN: The health authority here has taken samples from the swine population in Kampung Selamat, Tasek Gelugor, and started fogging strategic spots to eradicate the Japanese Encephalitis (JE) vector.

This comes in the wake of a 12-year-old boy who was infected with the fatal disease.

State executive councillor Dr Afif Bahardin told reporters that the state health department, assisted by its veterinary counterpart and the local municipality (Seberang Prai Municipal Council), were closely monitoring the situation.

On whether the affected area would be cordoned off and health screening for school pupils be held, he said it would be decided after the tests on the swine samples were done.

Muhammad Ammar Muqrish Zulkiffli, a Year Six pupil from SK Kampung Selamat, was reportedly infected with JE in April.

He has been admitted at Pantai Hospital, where he has regained consciousness after falling into a coma last week.

“He is still unable to walk and talk,” said the hospital neurologist, Dr Wong Yee Choon, who is treating Ammar.

He added that the infection had caused damage to Ammar’s brain.

Wong said many patients infected by full-blown JE would have permanent neurological disabilities.

Afif, who visited Ammar today, said the state government would help to lessen the boy’s family’s financial burden on medical cost.

The patient’s mother, Haniza Ayob, called on the relevant authorities to relocate a pig farm, which is only 2km from her son’s school, to another suitable place.


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