Noor's son Saeed needs an urgent blood transfusion, having contracted a severe form of malaria. [Source: BBC News]
“I can’t stand the sight of my baby suffering,” says Noor Zadi, as she cradles 10-month-old Saeed Ahmed in her arms.
Just weeks after she lost her home in Pakistan’s deadly floods, Noor is now terrified for her son.
“We are poor and we are really worried for him,” she says.
As a doctor inserts a cannula into his tiny ankle, gently easing a needle into his delicate skin, he screams in pain.
Saeed is in need of an urgent blood transfusion, having contracted a severe form of malaria.
Noor’s family is one of the thousands now facing a double burden. Health officials here in Sindh Province – the worst-affected region – say they’ve seen a dramatic spike in cases of malaria, dengue and diarrhoea, as displaced families live in the open next to stagnant water.
Saeed isn’t the only baby receiving life-saving treatment in the emergency ward of Thatta District hospital.
Seated on the other end of the same stretcher as Noor, another mother looks on in anguish as her child is connected to a drip.
Almost all of the patients on this ward are young children, almost all of them suffering from flood-related illnesses, says Dr Ashfaque Ahmed, the hospital’s medical officer.