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AWEIL - 16 Aug 2018

About 250 people suffer from River Blindness disease in Aweil

Authorities in Aweil State’s Aroyo County say more than 200 people have been infected with River Blindness disease.

Speaking to Radio Tamazuj Aroyo County Commissioner Barsham Barjwok confirmed that the disease in rise among the citizens and many have become blind due to lack of treatment.

“We have a lot of small black flies here. They are the ones that are causing this disease. It also causes some skin diseases, once it touches your skin it immediately reacts. There are now many people who have become blind including children because of this disease. Those affected are about 263.” he added.

Barjwok noted that most of those affected are children and the elderly while advising citizens residing in areas close to River to be careful and if possible move to other areas that do not have the flies.

The local official also revealed that the main health facility in the county lacks laboratory technicians despite a complete medical laboratory in the hospital.

River blindness also known as onchocerciasis is an eye and skin disease caused by a worm and transmitted to humans through the bite of a blackfly. The flies are common along rivers and streams. River blindness is the second most common cause of blindness due to infection.