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HomeHealth‘Address water and sewage issue before cholera gets out of hand’

‘Address water and sewage issue before cholera gets out of hand’


Harare Residents Trust (HRT) has joined the growing chorus of voices calling on the government to take swift action to address the cholera outbreak in the country.

The outbreak, which began just over six months ago, has continued to spread, with cases continuing to rise despite efforts to contain it.

In an interview with 263Chat, HRT Director Precious Shumba highlighted the urgent need for action to address the water supply situation in the country, which is a major contributing factor to the spread of the disease.

“Cholera cases are a cause for concern to the residents. All the efforts to handle the outbreak will be insignificant if the water supply situation remains dire. The sewerage bursts in the communities should be attended to as a matter of urgency,” Shumba said.

He also underscored the importance of prevention in curbing the outbreak, calling on the government to prioritize awareness on good hygiene to prevent the spread of the disease.

Meanwhile, the government has put in place a range of measures to mitigate the outbreak, including drilling new boreholes, sending more medical staff, and stepping up education on hygiene.

Gatherings have been largely banned, with funerals to be supervised in ensuring that water and food are safe.

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However, some cultural practices that contribute to the spread of cholera, such as open defecation and the use of rivers and streams as toilets, remain a challenge.

Religious practices such as washing sick people in rivers, notably in the Save, have also been prohibited.

As at 20 October 2023, 5 303 suspected cholera cases were recorded.

There have been 981 confirmed cases, 4,999 recoveries, 34 confirmed deaths and 115 suspected deaths since the outbreak began in February 2023.

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