Cholera Outbreaks in Mozambique After Heavy Rains

In recent weeks Mozambique reported heavy rains and storms throughout the country resulting in severe floods in the country's southern Gaza Province. Over 90 people have died and 211,000 displaced according to a UN report.

ChokweFloods in Mozambique

Further heavy rains are expected in the center and north of the country in coming days, so the number of people affected could rise. This critical situation has been declared a state of emergency by the Mozambican government.

Floods in MozambiqueDue to the interruption of water and sanitation systems, and the influx of people into resettlement camps, waterborne diseases are increasingly being notified.

Over 366 cases of severe diarrhea have been reported in Pemba City, Cabo Delgado Province since January 2. The presence of cholera in 22 samples (14 from Pemba, 4 from Mecufi, and 2 from Metuge) has been confirmed through microbiological laboratory testing at the Instituto Nacional de Saúde (National Health Institute, INS) of the Ministry of Health since January 30.

Health experts are concerned about the imminent threat of a cholera epidemic. The national Africhol team is expanding surveillance in the affected areas to closely survey the epidemic. Further samples from Nampula, Cabo Delgado, and other provinces are still being tested.

Authorities have taken the following response measures to control the outbreaks: chlorination of water sources, dissemination of key health education messages, and disinfection of affected homes.

  CTC of Pemba (Mozambique) 
Center for Cholera Treatment, Pemba, January 31, 2012