23 Apr 2007

Fiji typhoid outbreak claims another life

3:10 pm on 23 April 2007

The outbreak of typhoid in Fiji has claimed its second victim at the weekend and many thousand people in the country's northern and western division are at risk of contamination.

Typhoid is endemic and always present in Fiji's population, but this year there has been an outbreak of the illness.

The director of public health, Dr Josaia Samuela, says thousands of people are at risk as new cases have been confirmed.

"In the northern division 77 confirmed cases of typhoid, whereas in the western division the four new cases are just from the month of April. [There are ] two confirmed cases of death related to typhoid fever. One in the northern division happened over Easter, and one just happened in the western division."

Dr Samuela says the cause for the outbreak is contaminated water and officials are treating the water with chlorine to eliminate the disease.