The death toll from a cholera outbreak in Malawi has clinched to over 1,000 as the spread gains new momentum showcase as Health Ministry gives new directives.
In a statement, Malawi’s Health Minister Khumbize Chiponda said on Wednesday, January 25, 2023, that the outbreak is the highest with a record of 30,621.
Most of the deaths happened in the two main cities of Blantyre and Lilongwe where children have recently started going to classes after schools delayed opening.
The country’s Health Minister called on people to take extra care handling the bodies of cholera patients before funerals.
“People who are dying from cholera may be washed by family members who then prepare funeral feasts. Cholera outbreaks commonly follow these feasts,” said Chiponda.
“The cumulative confirmed cases and deaths since the onset of the outbreak is 30,621 and 1,002, respectively with a case fatality rate at 3.27 percent,” Chiponda added.
Malawi’s Health officials said last week that a number of clinics in the country, which received 2.7 million doses of the cholera vaccine under a WHO program, were running low on supplies.
Minister Chiponda called for people to use proper decontamination procedures with chlorine and plastic body bags.
Cholera regularly hits hard in the Southern African country during rains from November to March, but there was an unusually high surge in contaminations during and after the festive season. The usual annual death toll is about 100.
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