Doctors deployed to cholera hotspots

Source: The Herald – Breaking news.

Doctors deployed to cholera hotspots 
Cholera virus

Rumbidzayi Zinyuke

Senior Reporter

More doctors and health staff have been deployed by Government to cholera treatment centres in Buhera District and all funerals in the district must now be supervised by health workers to curb the spread of the disease.

Manicaland has been hardest hit by the cholera outbreak, which was first reported in March this year and has to date reported 2 411 cumulative cases and 63 deaths.

Buhera District has reported a cumulative 726 cases of suspected cholera cases and 27 deaths with a case fatality rate of 3,7 percent. At least 46 patients were admitted in cholera treatment centres across the district with the epicentre for transmission in Buhera District in Murambinda.

The main drivers of the cholera outbreak in Buhera District included lack of safe water and use of river water.

Speaking after the Cabinet meeting yesterday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Jenfan Muswere said Cabinet had approved a raft of measures aimed at addressing the cause of the cholera outbreak in the district and across other affected districts.

“Pertaining to the Buhera District cholera response, Cabinet has approved that doctors be deployed to visit all cholera treatment centres in the district, that more staff be mobilised to support the cholera treatment centres, that the setting up of cholera treatment camps and oral rehydration points closer to the community be finalised, that eight boreholes be drilled in the district and that community engagement and capacity building of traditional and religious leaders on public health measures to control cholera be intensified, that all funerals in Buhera district should be supervised and that cholera education will be intensified in schools,” he said.

Dr Muswere said for the whole of the country, Cabinet had also approved measures that would curtail the increase in new cholera cases.

“Cabinet in general approved that there be intensified risk communication and community engagement in the cholera response,” he said.

He said cholera test kits would also be sourced for the rural community centres while all boreholes would be fully equipped.

All deaths are expected to be documented and burials be supervised by health care workers and that there be continued intensified public health measures to contain the outbreak.

Health and Child Care Minister Dr Douglas Mombeshora addressing questions said while other districts such as Gutu and Zaka were also reporting a surge in cases, the same measures would apply.

“The cholera outbreak has spread to other districts, about 41 of them. The same measures will apply. We have activated our cholera response nationwide even in districts where we have not recorded any cases,” he said.

He said the Government had no plans to put in place intercity travel bans as a way of curbing the spread of cholera.

“This is not a contagious disease like Covid-19 but this happens when one eats faecal matter so basically basic hygiene is needed. We are encouraging all provinces to scale up their awareness campaigns in the communities through traditional leaders and church leaders,” he added.