cholera malawi
The cholera outbreak in Malawi now has a death toll of over 1,000.

Cholera Death Rate In Malawi Hits 1,000 As Outbreak Spreads

On Wednesday, the Malawi Health Minister, Khumbize Chiponda, said that the death toll from a cholera outbreak in the country has passed 1,000 while cholera cases have risen to 30,621.

Most of the deaths occurred in the two main cities of Lilongwe and Blantyre where children have recently gone back to classes after schools delayed opening to try and contain the spread.

Chiponda called on people to take extra care handling the bodies of cholera victims before funerals.

“People who are dying from cholera may be washed by family members who then prepare funeral feasts … Outbreaks of cholera commonly follow these feasts,” she said.

The minister called for people to use proper decontamination procedures with chlorine and plastic body bags.

Read Also: Why Cholera Continues to Threaten many African Countries

Cholera regularly hits 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 around 100.

“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 said.

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 programme, were running low on supplies.

The Malawi Ministry of Health declined to comment on the vaccine stock situation when reached out to by Reuters.

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