THE cholera outbreak continues unabated with Matabeleland North and the Midlands being the only provinces that have not reported any cholera cases out of the country’s 10 provinces.
So far, 13 African countries have reported cholera outbreaks in 2023; viz South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe included.
However, despite the cases reported in the country, the case fatality rate is still low in Zimbabwe.
Cholera is a bacterial disease usually spread through contaminated water.
It causes severe diarrhoea and dehydration that can result in death in a matter of hours if left untreated.
Rehydration is the mainstay of treatment.
Mild cases can be treated at home using oral rehydration while moderate to severe cases may require intravenous rehydration in the hospital.
To prevent cholera, boil drinking water or treat with chlorine.
Cook food well, keep it covered, eat it hot and peel your fruits.
At this time, limit buying already prepared food on the streets.
You should also frequently wash your hands with soap, especially after using the toilet.
It is very important to present early at the health facilities if you suspect you have cholera; symptoms which include a sudden onset of water diarrhoea with flecks of mucous in stool similar to rice water, nausea and vomiting.
Children may develop a fever.
Children can easily be affected during this time and it is important to make sure they avoid playing in areas that are dirty or swamped with sewage water.
Teach them to wash their hands thoroughly and avoid putting random items in their mouths. We can all fight to prevent cholera.
Mainway Meadows, Harare.