A cholera epidemic is devastating Zambia. According to local media, 351 deaths have been recorded and nearly 9,000 active cases are recorded across the country.
The strengthening of the health campaign announced by the Zambian authorities does not seem to be producing satisfactory results. The country is in fact facing a very formidable cholera epidemic.
In the last 24 hours, the country recorded 431 new cases and eleven deaths in six of the country’s ten provinces, while 388 people were discharged from hospitals. The total toll stands at 362 people dead and 9,155 affected since the appearance of the water-borne disease last October.
President Hakainde Hichilema called on the population to leave cities to settle in villages, saying that the lack of hygiene in highly populated urban areas favors the spread of cholera.
Strict measures announced
To counter the epidemic, the Zambian government has introduced a clause in a statutory instrument to strengthen cholera prevention and control measures, according to Zambian Health Minister Sylvia Masebo.
The clause introduced now prohibits the presence of bed guards in cholera treatment centers and requires the safe burial of deceased people suspected of having been affected by the disease.
Other stricter measures include restricting food trade in unsanitary conditions and banning funeral gatherings for those who died of cholera, while religious celebrations cannot last more than two hours.