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SASTM Newsflash - Cholera, diarrhea and dysentry update: Africa

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CHOLERA, DIARRHEA AND DYSENTERY UPDATE: AFRICA

 

Cholera - Rwanda (Rusizi District)

 

At least 26 people have been treated for cholera at Nkombo Island since August 2013, with hundreds of others at the risk of contracting the disease.

 

According to the director of Nkombo Health Centre, Didas Mukeshimana, the disease outbreak is attributed to low access to clean and safe water at the island. No deaths have so far been recorded, officials said. The statistics were announced during a meeting to discuss how to avert the outbreak on the Lake Kivu Island this week that brought together local health and grassroots leaders, district officials and residents.

 

Nkombo Island is approximately 11 km from Kamembe town. The island, which is one of the 18 sectors that make up Rusizi District, covers an area of 21 sq km and is populated by about 17 000 residents. Sector officials said access to clean water in the area is still at around 30 per cent. Residents mainly rely on water they fetch from Lake Kivu, believed to be contaminated. "The low access to potable water is complicating efforts to improve hygiene and sanitation in this village," Mukeshimana said.

 

Saturday Times saw women and children fetching water from Lake Kivu. Some of them said they use the lake water in several domestic activities, including cooking, washing kitchen utensils and clothes as well as bathing. Some claimed that some area residents drink the unsafe water without boiling it.

 

Diarrhea - Mozambique (Zambezia Province)

 

A diarrhea outbreak caused at least 5 deaths in Zambezia province in central Mozambique.

 

Despite the provincial health authorities announcement that the outbreak of diarrhea and vomiting is already controlled, the truth is that the risk of severity continues to be a reality, because the provincial bodies have already launched an appeal to strengthen preventive measures.

 

"Every family and individual must continue with these preventive measures," said Horca Naera, director of health and social action of Alto Molocue in Zambezia province, one of the most populated areas of Mozambique. "The treatment of water for consumption as well as washing of hands after use of the latrine are essential measures that people have to take," Naera underlined in a meeting with the press.

 

Communicated by: ProMED-mail

 


 

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