Maputo — Although media coverage of the current cholera outbreak in central Mozambique has concentrated almost exclusively on Sofala province, the health authorities in the neighbouring province of Manica now admit to at least two cholera deaths in 231 cases.
This means that almost four times as many cases have been reported from Manica than from Sofala.
The outbreak in Manica started in late December, and cases have been diagnosed in the provincial capital, Chimoio, and Manica and Barue districts. According to the Manica provincial chief doctor, Firmino Jaqueta, cited in Tuesday's issue of the Maputo daily "Noticias", one of the deaths was recorded in Manica district in January, and the second took place in late February, in Barue district.
Jaqueta said attentions are currently concentrated on Barue, where the disease has spread to three localities. As of Friday, six people were hospitalised, suffering from cholera in the district, four in the town of Catandica, and two in the administrative post of Honde.
The situation is described as "stationary" in Chimoio and in Manica district, though the health authorities remain on maximum alert to respond to any new cases. In Sofala, the head of the Community Health Department, Virginia Saldanha, said that 64 cases of the disease have been diagnosed since the onset of the outbreak.
The area worst hit remains Marromeu district, on the south bank of the Zambezi. As of Friday, 12 patients were hospitalised in the two cholera treatment centres in the district.