Teen girls among four discharged following Wakapoa mystery illness


Four family members from Wakapoa in the Pomeroon River, Region Two were discharged from the Georgetown Public Hospital one week after being hospitalized following a mystery illness which resulted in the death of two others.

Richard Thomas and his father Norman Thomas were discharged on Monday, while the two 15-year-old girls were discharged on Friday last – three days after they were admitted.

“I’m doing fine so far and we were discharged and we’re going home,” Richard told the News Room Tuesday during a telephone interview.

Richard’s brother-in-law Gavin Richards remains hospitalized.

“My brother-in-law is in the hospital yet…he is doing fine so far but the doctor still looking into his health to see how he coming through and them still got him on a small treatment,” Richard said.

It has been two weeks now since Gavin has been receiving medical attention.

Richard’s wife, 38-year-old Selema Thomas died on June 17 at the Georgetown Hospital two days after being hospitalized.

Thomas’ father, 76-year-old Edward Richards was the second victim to have died from the mystery illness on June 19.

The post mortem report on both victims is inconclusive and samples have been sent overseas for further testing.

The entire family became ill after reportedly eating pepperpot and cassava bread on June 10. They experienced symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhoea, severe headache and fever.

It was also reported that three dogs from the family experienced the same symptoms and died.

Relatives had told the News Room that doctors gave them a prescription to buy medication for cyanide poisoning.

Cyanide is released from natural substances in some foods and in certain plants such as cassava, beans and almonds.

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