Cholera Deaths Rise to 16 with more than 400 cases reported

The death toll from the cholera outbreak in Harare’s high-density suburbs of Glen View and Budiriro has risen to 16, with health officials yesterday quarantining and decommissioning all possible sources of the disease.

“The death toll has risen to 16 after more people died of suspected cholera today (yesterday) morning,”Council health director Dr Clemence Duri has said.

“Although we are not yet sure of the cause of death, we are suspecting it is cholera because of the symptoms presented.

“As of today (yesterday) 106 people were admitted at Beatrice Infectious Diseases Hospital. Some of the patients were being treated and discharged.

“We have also decommissioned all boreholes in Tichagarika area (Glen View), after they were exposed to bacteria which causes cholera and typhoid.”

Residents interviewed said the outbreak was as a result of the local authority’s failure to consistently supply running water, as well as failure to collect garbage.

“There was one at Nembudziya and three at Gumunyu. All these cases are linked to Harare. These people travelled to Harare and it is suspected that they contracted cholera there.

“The province has those four cases only, but since Midlands is at the centre of the country geographically, there is high risk of the disease spreading to the province, so we are on high alert.

“We want to urge people experiencing diarrhoea or suffering from any abdominal disorder to seek medical treatment quickly.”

Dr Nyadundu said the Ministry of Health and Child Care had already set a cholera treatment camp in Gokwe North as part of its rapid response.

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He said the ministry had also managed to contain typhoid in Gweru, after eight people died from the disease recently.

“We are happy to announce that the number of typhoid cases has significantly gone down,” said Dr Nyadundu.