1997 - Cholera in Mozambique - Update 3
19 November 1997
Disease Outbreak Reported
The weekly number of cases of cholera continues to increase bringing the total to 1664 cases and 62 deaths (case fatality rate 3.7%) reported since the second week of August up to 7 November. These cases were reported from Maputo City as well as in other areas of Maputo Province. Forty-seven suspect cases (10 confirmed) were also registered in Gaza Province during the week 7 to 13 November where a team from the Ministry of Health and WHO visited on 13 November. All cases were in the capital of the province, Xai-Xai City, and 57% were from one quarter relying on drinking water from the Limpopo river. A cholera ward has been established at the provincial hospital and a special tent has been set up in the most affected area to ensure early ORT of patients.
The Ministry of Health, WHO and Médecins Sans Frontières have discussed the situation and strategies to meet the continuing increase which is occuring in spite of control activities such as health education and improvement of sanitation and water supply. The poor condition of sanitation and water supply in other cities is increasing the risk of spread to other provinces of the country. The circulating strain of Vibrio cholerae is resistant to common antibiotics available in the country and therapy therefore centres on initial administration of intravenous fluids initially followed by ORT.
The Ministry of Health is appealing to MSF for staff and equipment to support medical assistance for cholera patients in Maputo City and Province and is requesting WHO support for material and funds for therapy and health education during the coming six months.