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Ninth measles victim in Yala, 3 remain critically ill

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Ninth measles victim in Yala, 3 remain critically ill | The Thaiger

PHOTO: A mother holds her child as nurses at the Tambon Yala Health Promotion Hospital in Yala’s Muang district vaccinate him against measles yesterday. – Nakharin Chinnawornkomol

Another child has died as a result of complications from measles in Yala province yesterday morning.

This latest preventable fatality brings the number of deaths from the disease in the southernmost province to nine since June. The Yala Provincial Public Health Office head Dr Songkran Maichum announced the sad news to the media yesterday.

The Nation reports that three other children remain critically ill with measles at Yala Hospital. Admitting the disease outbreak in the province was “worrying”, he said his office aimed to have 7,000 at-risk children – especially those aged between five months and five years old – in Yala vaccinated by November 4.

He said the main reasons for the fatalities were that the patients had not been brought to hospital early enough, dying from subsequent health complications, and not been vaccinated at an early age. He also said the 8,000 doses of vaccines available were sufficient, though the office has requested for another batch of 3,000 doses.

Songkran noted that the most-affected districts were Yaha, Bannang Sata and Kabang in Yala province.

Health officials continued vaccinating young children against measles yesterday. Acting director of Tambon Yala Health Promotion Hospital, Nurse Thelma Doyor, led a team to vaccinate 15 children in Ban Pajo (Moo 3) in Muang district.

Aiming to cover the area’s 108 toddlers, the hospital will ask for additional doses to cover the rest by November 4, she said.

The hospital had previously vaccinated 35 children. Abdul-Roning Abdulloh, the imam of Ban Pajo Mosque, said he was inviting residents to have their children vaccinated, as he was able to confirm that it is acceptable for Muslims to receive the vaccine. He cited his previous consultation with many Muslim doctors about the vaccine, as some people were afraid that the vaccinations were not in accordance with halal principles.

The Imam added that he will tell people during the Friday prayer assembly that vaccines were necessary to protect young children. Songkran said officials giving the vaccines have been told to download a video clip featuring statements from the Sheikhul Islam Office and Provincial Islamic Committees saying this treatment is acceptable.

STORY: The Nation

Read The Thaiger’s editorial about the issue HERE.



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Pattani mosque still a popular pilgrimage for Malaysians

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Pattani mosque still a popular pilgrimage for Malaysians | The Thaiger

32 were killed there 14 years ago in a Thai army attack.

PHOTO: New Straits Times

The Kresek mosque in Pattani, the locations where 32 suspected Muslim insurgents were killed in a stand-off 14 years ago, continues to be a popular place for visitors from Malaysia. This is reported in the New Straits Times of Malaysia.

The mosque’s Imam, Zakaria Mat Sin, said Malaysians, especially those from the northern east-coast states like Kelantan and Terengganu, travelled all the way to the area to witness the bullet holes and other damage left from the attack.

Recalling the incident, Zakaria said he was waiting to perform the Subuh prayer with the 32 men when the attack happened.

“I was waiting outside the mosque when suddenly I heard loud sounds coming from the mosque. I saw many soldiers outside and inside the mosque. I only went inside with other villagers when the attack had ended,” he said.

“People from countries like Malaysia and Singapore are still visiting the mosque to see the damage done in the attack,” according to the 64 year old Imam.

On April 28, 2004, the Thai army surrounded the mosque where it was believed 32 Muslim separatists were holed up following a spate of armed attacks in various spots in the province.

After an eight-hour standoff and exchanges of gunfire, the army attacked, killing everyone in the mosque.

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Narathiwat officials swing into action to combat deadly measles outbreak

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Narathiwat officials swing into action to combat deadly measles outbreak | The Thaiger

by Narong Nuansakul

The southern province of Narathiwat is stepping up vaccinations against measles as the disease has already claimed up to twelve lives in Yala and Pattani since June this year.

A huge number of youngsters aged between one and five in Yala and Pattani have come down with measles in recent months, claiming the lives of 12 children.

The disease has been spreading from the two provinces to Narathiwat. To date, measles have struck 77 people in Narathiwat, with most patients coming from Rusoh district, which borders Yala.

“Local hospitals are now assigned to inject MMR (Measles, Mumps & Rubella) vaccines to risky groups of children,” says Narathiwat’s public-health chief Wises Sirinthornsopo.

He said vaccination was the best way to prevent the contagious disease from spreading.

“We hope we can vaccinate all children at risky schools within the first two weeks of the new semester,” he said.

He added that vaccination teams would then start injecting other local children.

Narathiwat officials swing into action to combat deadly measles outbreak | News by The Thaiger

STORY: The Nation

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Koh Tarutao archipelago is plastic-free

The Thaiger

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Koh Tarutao archipelago is plastic-free | The Thaiger

Tarutao Islands National Park has been declared as an area free of plastic and styrofoam containers for the current tourist season.

Assistant Park Director Kittipong Sanui said during the launching ceremony of Satun Andaman Tourism Season that the Department of Natural Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation has imposed a ban on the use and import of once-used plastic and styrofoam containers since August to reduce the volume of waste.

He said the measures were receiving good cooperation from tourists and local businesses, and is being promoted in the media at information points, tourist attractions and piers.

The national park office is also enhancing safety measures for visitors, by having officials undergo rescue and lifesaving workshops in order to keep them prepared for any unforeseen incidents.

Tarutao National Park, off Satun, is home to 51 islands scattered across 1,490 square kilometers. Most of the land areas are covered by tropical and mangrove forests. The national park is famous for its canals and streams flowing into the sea.

Koh Tarutao archipelago is plastic-free | News by The Thaiger Koh Tarutao archipelago is plastic-free | News by The Thaiger

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