The acquisition of disease in a resettlement area in the Sudan and the means whereby such diseases may be controlled

Omer, A. H. S; (1975) The acquisition of disease in a resettlement area in the Sudan and the means whereby such diseases may be controlled. PhD thesis, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. DOI: 10.17037/PUBS.00682387

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The construction of the Aswan High Dam resulted in flooding and submerging the land behind it, By 1964 a large and deep lake was formed and about 150 kilometres of it was inside the northern borders of the Sudan. It covered the Wadi Haifa district where 60,000 Sudanese Nubians had been living and the Republic of the Sudan had obligations, as stated in the 1959 Nile Waters agreement, to resettle these people. Over 50,000 of these Nubians were transferred and resettled in Khashm el Girba, 600 miles away in Eastern Sudan. They had been deeply rooted in their homes for thousands of years and had there been part of an ancient civilisation as evidenced by relics in Bohen and Abu Simbil. This mass resettlement was completed in about 3 years. The magnitude of the problem surpassed any past experience of the kind in Sudan and was perhaps unique in the world. The Nubians in the new area faced completely different social, ecological and environmental conditions from what they had known. This it was thought would expose them to new diseases, a situation which needs to be studied with as objectives first the information of the public health authorities about the health problems detected and thus helping in establishing control measures and secondly the determination of principles for preservation of health that ought to be applicable to other situations. The present study included clinical examinations and investigations . in both areas in an attempt to find the evidence of acquisition of disease resulting from the uprooting and resettlement of the Nubians in the new area. This study had shown that the Nubians are acquiring Schistosoma i mansoni infection for the first time and that this infection is gaining predominance over S. haematobium infection. This study also provides evidence that the reaction of the Nubians to the leishmanin test is changing. This may suggest that the new settlers are being exposed to leishmaniasis. The Nubians came from a malaria free district and are now also faced with the problem of malaria in Khashm el Girba. The results of the malaria survey are therefore reported. The pattern of other diseases in the two districts, as well as G-6-P D deficiency and abnormal haemoglobins in the Nubians are also reported. An ecological study of the resettlement area was made and a survey for the vectors of disease and for snails was performed. Thus the medical problems of immediate importance to the new settlers were found to be'schistosomiasis and malaria and the findings of this study suggest that leishmaniasis and onchocerciasis are possible future problems. Careful surveillance of these medical problems is needed and the possible control measures for these diseases are discussed in this study, Similar surveys are needed in resettlement areas9 and newly established agricultural schemes as this will enable the health authorities to take the necessary control measures. It is suggested that this study ought to be applicable in the proposed Rahad scheme in the Sudan where it is planned to resettle Nomadic tribes. It might also be applicable to similar schemes elsewhere.

Item Type: Thesis
Thesis Type: Doctoral
Thesis Name: PhD
Contributors: Woodruff, AW (Thesis advisor);
Additional Information: Department of Clinical Tropical Medicine (1975)
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases
Funders: Center for Research Libraries


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