About 40 students of Dungna Central School (DCS) in Chhukha had clinical signs of conjunctivitis since last week. The prevalent of the disease among the school students was confirmed after being reported to the Royal Center for Disease Control (RCDC).
Although the outbreak is said to be under control, around 20 students were initially confirmed to have conjunctivitis after which the number gradually increased to more than 30. “Between yesterday and day before, we had around ten students coming with similar symptoms but none today” said the Dungna BHU health official adding this would mean that the epidemic is under control.
“After we diagnosed around 20 students in the same day and a few in the consecutive days, the hospital alerted the school about the illness and requested the school health coordinator to isolate the infected ones to prevent the transmission of the ailment”. The health official said that the most common symptoms reported were redness of the eye, excessive discharge of tears, swollen conjunctiva, complain of blurred vision, burning eyes and itchy eyes. “This would last for days or more than a week”.
The school health coordinator, Namgay Lhendup said that the awareness on the diseases are periodically made during the morning assembly. “Infected students were either separated in different rooms or sent home until the recovery based on the severity” he said adding that the infected ones shall resume the class after complete recovery.
He added that since the school was a congested place with limited spare rooms, the students had to be sent home until the recovery. “The number of infected is not precise because while some are recently infected, some are recovering and some already recovered and resumed their class.”
The girl’s caregiver of the school, Sonam Yangzom said that the attack rate is higher among boys than the girls although the ratio of girls is comparatively higher than boys in the school. However she said the timely medication was provided to the girls and assured that the illness being controlled by temporarily isolating the infected ones in a separate room.
“The source of the disease is not known but it could be from the nearby pond where students swim despite the restriction from school,” she said. She added that the disease could be either transmitted from outside the campus where students go outing especially during the weekends.
The school has around four hundred students of which 80 percent of the students stay in hostel.