Mozambique

Cholera kills 33 in Mozambique in four months

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Maputo, Mozambique (PANA) - Cholera has killed 33 patients in Mozambique since September 2003, when the first case was diagnosed in the northern province of Niassa.
Monday's issue of the Maputo daily "Noticias" reported that five provinces -- Niassa, Cabo Delgado, and Nampula in the northern region, and Sofala and Manica in the center of the country -- were now affected.

Sofala is the worst hit, with 715 cases diagnosed. Ten of the patients died in the districts of Maringue and Chemba.

Health authorities in Beira, the provincial capital, are now complaining of a shortage of staff for civic education campaigns in most of the city's suburbs, where sanitation conditions are deteriorating.

Caia district is another part of Sofala that has been seriously affected by the disease, with a total of 197 cases reported.

In Niassa, where 539 cases have been diagnosed with 16 deaths, the most affected areas are Lichinga, the provincial capital, the town of Cuamba, and Lago district.

Health authorities, however, told reporters that the number of cases in Cuamba is gradually dropping, following regularisation of the water supply.

In Nampula province, the disease has spread to the district of Erati, with 30 patients admitted to the local rural hospital during the first three days.

Previously, cholera cases had been reported in the districts of Nacala-Porto, Nacala-a-Velha and Memba, all blamed on the heavy rainfall in the northern region of the country.

Health authorities are also paying special attention to the situation in Zambezia and Maputo provinces, where there has been a growing number of cases of acute diarrhoeas, raising fears of a cholera outbreak there.

The chief Maputo City medical officer Nidia Remane urged local communities to get involved in awareness campaigns and civic education to prevent the disease.

"We have our attention on the situation, and we have reopened the Cholera Treatment Centre in Mavalane General Hospital, where we are sending all cases of acute diarrhoeas.

"But we still think that cooperation from the communities will be very necessary, because it is there where basic care should be enforced," said Remane.

Pan African News Agency
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