ALOR STAR, Jun 23 – Six younger and older siblings of the two-year-old boy who died of diphtheria yesterday have also been admitted to Sultan Abdul Halim Hospital (HSAH) in Sungai Petani last Tuesday on suspicion of being infected by the bacteria. Kedah Health director Datuk Dr Norhizan Ismail, in a statement today, said the siblings were aged 10 months, three years, four years, eight years, 10 years and 11 years, but no mention was made to their gender.

Their two-year-old brother died yesterday after being transferred from the hospital to Sultanah Bahiyah Hospital (HSB), he added. He said the deceased 10-month-old sibling was also transferred to HSB yesterday. According to Dr Norhizan, four of the seven siblings, including the deceased, were found to have not received the diphtheria vaccination.

The others were the 10-month-old, three-year-old and four-year-old siblings, he added. In another case, Dr Norhizan said a six-year-old child of foreign citizenship, had been admitted to HSB for suspected diphtheria. The child, from Taman Nilam, Langkawi, is reported in stable condition, he added. He said the department was still waiting for reports from the Medical Research Institute in Kuala Lumpur on all the cases. — Bernama

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