HONIARA, Solomon Islands (SIBC, Jan. 16) - There is a malaria and diarrhea epidemic in Malaita Province.

Malaita Health Director Dr Judson Leafasia revealed that there are many people who are reported sick with malaria and diarrhea in the province.

Dr Leafasia says one of the problems with diarrhea is that those who have it lose water from their bodies. He added that there is lack of medicine in the province.

Leafasia said the epidemic is serious because more people are ill than they would normally be during this time.

Dr Leafasia adds that an epidemic is when the number of people ill at a certain time is above what they normally expect. He expresses concern that at a time when there are insufficient resources, a disease epidemic can lead to people dying.

He says the Malaita health sector is using a lot more quinine to treat Malaita than they would normally use on a routine basis. He therefore encourages people to follow health advisories to avoid getting sick.

January 17, 2003

For additional reports from the Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation.

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