Emergencies preparedness, response

Cholera in South Africa

23 May 2003

Disease Outbreak Reported

The Department of Health has reported a cholera outbreak in the Mpumalanga region. From 26 April to 18 May, the cumulative number of suspected and confirmed cholera cases is 174 with 3 deaths (case fatality ratio 1.7%). The outbreak has included 27 areas bordering Swaziland and Mozambique, with Tonga being the most affected area.

A team from the Department of Health, joined by a medical officer from the WHO country office, has travelled to Mpumalanga to assess the situation and make recommendations to contain the outbreak.

This is the third province after Eastern Cape and Kwazulu-Natal to report a cholera outbreak this year. From 1 January to 28 March 2003, the cumulative number of reported cholera cases in South Africa is 2362.