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Durban’s meningitis warning after death of 7-year-old boy

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AT least 40 pupils as well as doctors, nurses and teachers in Amanzimtoti have been placed on antibiotics to prevent them from contracting a “very infectious” strain of meningitis following the death of a 7-year-old boy last week.

Paediatrician Thesiga Reddy, one of the doctors who treated the boy at Kingsway Hospital, said he was admitted with a “unique” case of meningococcal meningitis, which was known to progress rapidly. Although it was easy to treat in the early stages, “the child was unconscious by the time he got to the hospital”.

The boy was given the required antibiotics, but once that form of meningitis was at an advanced stage there was always “a poor outcome”.

Reddy said given that meningococcal meningitis was highly infectious the department of health had been informed of the boy’s case and was investigating. He said no other cases had been reported.

Following the boy’s death schools in Amanzimtoti have warned parents to carefully monitor the health of their children. Over the past few days pupils have been sent home with letters explaining what medical red flags their parents should look out for.

Amanzimtoti Primary School and Umdoni Pre-primary issued letters to parents while other institutions including Noah’s Ark Pre-school and Daycare Centre posted warnings on Facebook. However, all the schools assured the community that none of their pupils had contracted the disease.

Doctor Casandra Sullivan of the Amanzimtoti Intercare medical facility said: “It’s terrible that one child died but it’s not (threat of the disease) as major as stated on some Facebook posts.” She said South African children were vaccinated only with the drug Prevnar, which protected them against pneumococcal meningitis and not viral or meningococcal meningitis, which the boy had contracted.

Sullivan said while no other case of meningitis had been reported over the past few days, the few patients who had come in with “suspicious” symptoms had been sent to hospital as a precaution.

She said typical meningitis symptoms included severe headaches, neck ache and vomiting.

“Babies who have high fevers and don’t want to feed should be taken to the doctor immediately.”

Dr Reddy said parents could have their children vaccinated for meningococcal meningitis at private health care facilities as the vaccine was not available at government facilities.

Meanwhile, two cases of viral meningitis have been reported on the Bluff. A Marlborough Park Junior Primary School pupil was rushed to hospital with severe headaches a week ago but has since recovered and is back at school. The principal said no other pupils from the school had meningitis.

However, the boy’s mom has also contracted viral meningitis and is still in hospital. Yesterday she called on parents to be extra cautious when their children complained of headaches.

“When my son woke up he just kept on crying that his head is sore, and then his stomach started running and he was vomiting and that’s when I jumped in my car and took him to hospital.”

She said following blood tests and a lumbar puncture doctors informed her he had tested positive for viral meningitis. Just days after he was discharged she ended up in hospital and again a lumbar puncture indicated viral meningitis. She said apart from the severe headaches both she and her son had been extremely sensitive to light.

KZN health department spokesperson Ncumisa Mafunda said “there is no reason for alarm”.

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Look: 4 critically injured in tanker and bus crash on N3

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Tanker and bus on fire mooi river

Four people have been injured and multiple others injured when a tanker truck, a bus and other vehicles were involved in a serious crash on N3 north just before the Hidcote off ramp in Mooi River.

Netcare 911’s Shawn Herbst said that paramedics responded to the accident scene at 15H42 on Monday afternoon.

“Netcare 911 with Nsele Ambulance Services Responded to a collision on the N3 Johannesburg bound in Hidcote KZN Midlands region.

Reports indicate that a bus, tanker and multiple cars were involved in a collision leaving four people critical and approximately fourty-four other patients with minor to serious injuries,” said Hersbt.

The fire and rescue services are currently on scene trying to extinguish the fire to determine if any deaths have occurred.

This is a developing story.

Tanker and bus on fire mooi river

Tanker bus accident hidcote

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Attorney Theasen Pillay found deceased in his Umhlanga Ridge apartment

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Attorney Theasan Pillay death

Durban – Lawyer Theasan Pillay, 47, from attorneys Theasan Pillay and Associates has been found dead in his apartment on Solstice road in Umhlanga Ridge on Friday morning.

Private security company, Reaction Unit South Africa (Rusa) reported that they received a call at 11h34 on Friday from a relative requesting assistance after he made the gruesome discovery.

Rusa officers and paramedics on arrival found Pillay in his bedroom.

He had suffered stab wounds to his arm and chest.

“It was established that Pillay left a suicide note at his offices in Umhlanga prior to leaving the premises this morning. His employees discovered the note and called him. During a telephonic conversation he assured them that he was fine and needed some time alone. They then informed his family and requested that they check on his well-being.

His brother proceeded to his apartment and gained access with a set of spare keys when he made the discovery,” said Rusa.

Pillay’s death is being investigated by the police and updates will be shared as soon as they become available.

This is a developing story.

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Leo Prinsloo guarded Kim Kardashian amongst other high profile people

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Leo Prinsloo kim Kardashian

Pretoria – The hero guard, Leo Prinsloo, once served as a guard for former President Nelson Mandela, Prince Charles and even Kim Kardashian amongst high profile people, IOL has reported.

Deon Coetzee, MD of the Fortis Group said that Prinsloo has been in various security roles for more than 30 years now, with a 12 year career in the South African Police Special Task Force.

He had extensive training, including training with Abu Dhabi’s Anti-Terrorism unit.

In the SAPS Task Force, he was a head instructor of their lone operator training.

Prinsloo and Lloyd Mthombeni became a world topic when a video was shared on social media of them being shot at by robbers.

Coetzee said the two had been escorting a van that was transporting cellphones when they came under attack on the N4 freeway in Pretoria.

He said the modus operandi of criminals is to take out both the escort vehicle and the courier vehicle.

“In the video you see what was happening to the escort vehicle. Two vehicles with three criminals in each tried to take them and Leo took evasive action,” Coetzee said.

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“The guard in the passenger seat, Lloyd Mthombeni, was just four days on the job when the incident happened,” he said.

Dash cam footage of the incident was shared thousands of times and quickly went viral on social media. The public has hugely been amazed by the bravery exhibited by Prinsloo who managed to keep his cool as bullets rained on his van.

News agencies across the globe covered the incident showing Prinsloo’s daring escape from the robbers.

Death threats

Meanwhile, Prinsloo has been placed under police guard following death threats.

Coetzee said they have had to step up security around him following the threats.

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