Zambia Cholera Outbreak - UNICEF Situation Report #5, 9 May 2016

Situation Report
Originally published



  • A total of 1,179 cumulative cases of cholera have been reported in Zambia since 5 February 2016 (Epidemiological Week 6 of 2016), of which 192 cases are laboratory confirmed. 31 deaths have been reported since the onset of the outbreak, with eight of these deaths being children.

  • Cholera cases have been reported in the following eight districts: Lusaka (953) and Rufunsa (8) in Lusaka Province, Chibombo (23) and Kabwe (2) in Central Province, Nsama (66) in Northern Province; Ndola (28) in Copperbelt Province and, in Mazabuka (50) and Monze (49) districts of Southern Province.

  • The index case was in Kanyama compound in Lusaka district and later spread to the neighbouring district of Chibombo, and then to six more districts. All of the reported cases seem to be linked to the Lusaka outbreak, with the exception of the cases in Nsama district, which seem to be imported from DR Congo.

  • The are 42 cholera cases under treatment as of 2 May 2016, in Lusaka Province (15), Monze (23) and Mazabuka (1) districts in Southern Province and Ndola (3) in Copperbelt Province. As of 3 May, 77.5% of the target population (or 421,548 people) in Lusaka district have been vaccinated with the Oral Cholera Vaccine.

Situation in numbers

8 Districts Affected by Cholera

1,179 Cumulative Cases Reported

192 Cumulative Cases Laboratory Confirmed

31 Cholera Deaths to Date

Situation overview

Since 5 February 2016, 1,179 cumulative cases of cholera have been reported in Zambia (953 in Lusaka city and 8 in Rufunsa district in Lusaka Province; 23 in Chibombo and 2 in Kabwe in Central Province, 66 in Nsama in Northern Province, 28 in Ndola in Copperbelt Province and 50 in Mazabuka and 49 in Monze districts in the Southern Province). The cases in both districts of the Southern Province started at the end of Epidemiological Week 16. One hundred and ninety-two (192) of the cases reported have been laboratory confirmed as cholera. Thirty one (31) cholera related deaths have been reported since the onset of the outbreak, of which eight are children. As of 2 May 2016, there were 42 cases of cholera under treatment (15 in Lusaka Province, 3 in Copperbelt Province and 24 in Southern province).

Apart from the Nsama outbreak, which seem to be linked to the outbreak in DR Congo, the remaining cases are linked to the Lusaka outbreak. Sources of new infections are linked to contaminated water, contaminated food sold in the street and inadequate sanitation (with only 55% households having latrines in the affected peri-urban areas in Lusaka), which is exacerbated by low levels of hygiene practices. Reporting is still a challenge in many districts (timely and quality data), hence there are some discrepancies noted on the number of cases reported in the previous situation report.