KABUL: The severe winter in Balkh province in the north has caused a worrisome pneumonia pandemic. Health officials said Monday that at least 20 children infected with the disease died over the past one month in Mazar-e-Sharif city, provincial capital.
The officials said that dozens of other sick children are hospitalized in the only government hospital.
Physicians are blamed for carelessness regarding the epidemic, but they reject the allegations saying that unexpected severe cold weather caused the disease among children.
Weak security in some districts and Taliban’s active presence is another reason that more patients refer to the state-run health facility.
According to health officials, 116 health clinics are active in different districts of Balkh, but some of them have been closed recently due to bad security situation.