Local officials in the province of Uruzgan said that families in the province are using opium as medication to treat their children.
Health officials in the province acknowledged that some families bring opium-addicted patients to healthcare centers.
Children have reportedly died as a result of using opium as medicine, according to authorities.
"If patients are brought here immediately, we can still assist them, but if it gets late, the child will die,” said Rahmatullah Kamran, a doctor.
"Its harm is more than its advantages since it leads to addiction and, as a result, a person loses his life,” said Mohammadullah Rouhani, director of public health in Uruzgan.
Meanwhile, families who give their children opium for medical purposes said that they were unaware of the consequences.
"My child is very sick. I gave him narcotics because he was in bad health, and I brought him to the hospital at night,” said Allah Dad, the father of the sick child.
"I have personally used opium, either to make the child sleep or to make the child cry less,” said Torjan, a resident of Uruzgan.
"I myself have used opium many times and it is a very harmful that we give it to children,” said Sediqullah, a resident of Uruzgan.
According to the officials at Tarinkot Provincial Hospital, about 500 children have been brought to this hospital for treatment in the past year, and their families have given them opium for treatment.
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