from MAVHUTO BANDA in Lilongwe, Malawi
LILONGWE, (CAJ News) – AT least 188 people have died in Malawi following the largest outbreak of cholera in the past ten years.
The death toll is from 6 253 cases since the eruption of the water borne disease in March.
Malawi has received a timely consignment of 2,9 million doses of Oral Cholera Vaccine (OCV) as the disease spreads across the country.
The World Health Organization (WHO) through The International Coordinating Group (ICG) on Vaccine Provision facilitated procurement of these vaccines for the Malawi Government, funded by the Global Alliance of Vaccines (GAVI).
“The OCV campaign that will be carried over the next few weeks is just one of the country’s strategies to strengthen the ongoing cholera response and preparedness in Malawi,” said Minister of Health, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda.
The campaign will target 2,9 million Malawians comprising of adults and children aged one year and above living in the 27 highly cholera-affected districts.
In addition, the government has encouraged early health seeking behaviour for treatment among citizens, the provision of safe water and sanitation and positive hygiene behaviour practices.
This is the second consignment of cholera vaccines received by Malawi with support from GAVI, ICG, UNICEF and WHO.
The first campaign of May 2022 reached over 1,5 million people.
Cholera is endemic in the Southern African country, with seasonal outbreaks reported during the rainy season.
The latest outbreak is taking place in the context of tropical storm Ana and Cyclone Gombe whose floods displaced populations and left them with inadequate access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene.
– CAJ News