More and more Mauritians are falling prey to conjunctivitis. From the 23rd of February to the 1st of March, 5 524 consultations have been recorded at the Moka Eye Hospital.
With so many people affected by conjunctivitis, it is believed that pharmacies across the island are running out of stock of medicine to cure the disease. The importers, have therefore, decided to bring in “eye drops” from Reunion Island, as explained by the secretary of the Pharmaceutical Association of Mauritius (PAM). Emergency measures have been implemented in order to respond to the demand of Mauritian patients.
Fortunately though, ointments are still available in the country.
Shortage of medicine: who to blame?
It might be argued that the increasing number of cases of conjunctivitis led to this crisis situation where the stock has dramatically decreased. However, an ex-member of the PAM, Kentish Sooriamoothy, claimed that the problem comes from the Pharmacy Board: he argued that such a predicament could have been avoided had the number of types of medicine that can be imported not been restricted by the latter.
On the other hand, the Ministry of Health asserts that the import of these medicines is not limited in terms quantity. An officer of the ministry also added that eye drops are not lacking, according to l’Express.mu.
Treatment & precautions
As for the patients, they are recommended to avoid any close contact with uninfected individuals – the disease is infectious (via eye secretions) and it can be transmitted indirectly as well as in the case of an uninfected person touching contaminated surfaces without having direct contact with patients.
Patients also have to wash their hands regularly and avoid touching the eyes.
For treatment, they have to be examined by a doctor.
Furthermore, eye drops should not be shared.