James Mugo, who is the Central area human-wildlife conflict liaison officer, is appealing to Muranga County Administration to set-up snake bite treatment clinics to control the increase number of snake bites in the region.
Mugo, who addressed the audience at a sensitization forum held in Muranga South, stated that the county had reported 327 snake bite incidents, of which 52 had resulted in death.
“This is one of the areas where the Health Department falls short. According to the data, the majority of the victims died at home because they were unable to access emergency assistance and make it to the hospital,” Mugo said.
The most affected sub-counties, according to James, are Murang’a South, Kiharu, and Ithanga/Kakuzi, due to the lack of nearby medical facilities that can treat snakebite victims.
“The county’s response to snake bites is weak. It doesn’t have a strategy for dealing with situations involving snake bite emergencies,” He added.
According to reports, affected individuals are treated in hospitals in the counties of Nairobi, Kiambu, and Machakos. According to Mugo, the poor are the most are the most affected for they cannot afford to pay for ambulances to transport them to hospitals.
People who are affected often use the traditional practice of sucking the venom out of the wound which poses a health risk to them.
The Muranga Medical Director, Leonard Gikera, recommended that Level Four hospitals in the area should treat snakebite victims with anti-venom.
In order to reduce the risks associated with snakes, he urged the Kenya Wildlife Service to make sure that they deal with the issue at hand and sensitize residents about different types of bites and dangers associated with them.