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Mwanza forecasts cholera-free 2017

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After clocking three years with no cholera case recorded, Mwanza district health officials foresee 2017 as another stroll in the park.

District Health Officer (DHO), Raphael Piringu said in an interview that the success has been achieved through adherence to proper sanitation by community members, among others.

“We continuously tell our community members on the preventive measures every year. In addition, we have not stopped giving chlorine to households to protect their water. We also give health education to out-patients,” Piringu said.

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The DHO for Malawi’s border district with Mozambique added that they have also embarked on cross-border initiatives where health education has been extended to people in Moatize in Mozambique.

“We usually discuss with our friends in Mozambique because some of the cases come from there. So as we are doing the campaigns here, we also urge the health officials in Mozambique to do likewise,” he said.

He said the hospital has also strived to make sure drugs from the Central Medical Stores Trust are ordered in time maintaining an ordering record of drugs before the tenth day of every month.

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Meanwhile, in readiness for an outbreak, Piringu said they have erected tents at the hospital.

According to a report by Malawi Red Cross Society that was published on January 24, 2016, at least 18 people in the country died of cholera in a space of a month following an outbreak in Machinga and Zomba.

As of January 20, 2016, six districts had reported cholera cases.

Machinga registered 340 cases with 16 deaths, Zomba had registered 60 cases, Nkhata Bay 34 cases, Karonga eight cases with one death, Kasungu and Lilongwe reported one case each.

Cases in Zomba, Machinga and Phalombe were recorded in areas along the shore of Lake Chirwa.

This was due to poor sanitation and bad hygiene practices as well as consumption of unsafe water.

Malawi experienced the worst cholera outbreak in 2009 when more than 1,000 people were infected.

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