7 March 2018

Uganda: Cholera Kills 35 in Hoima, Infects 1,400

Photo: The Observer
Congolese refugees receiving treatment for cholera in Hoima.

An outbreak of cholera has killed 35 people and infected more than 1,400 others, health authorities in Hoima District have confirmed.

The outbreak was first reported in Kyangwali Refugee Settlement Camp last month.

Health workers now say it has spread to four villages in Kabwooya Sub-county and in some parts of Hoima Municipality. Most of the affected are Congolese refugees.

"As of Monday evening, we had registered 1,439 (cholera) cases out of which 35 people have died," Dr Nicholas Kwikiriza, the chairperson of the district cholera taskforce, said.

Admitted

Last Friday, 30 new cholera patients were admitted to Sebagoro Health Centre III, 10 cases were registered at Kasonga Isolation Centre while two cases were reported at Hoima Regional Referral Hospital.

"We are promoting efforts by people to access sanitation, water and hygiene but there are some communities that have low pit-latrine coverage," Dr Kwikiriza said.

He said the district in partnership with development partners is distributing aqua safe tablets for water purification.

The commissioner for clinical services in the Health ministry, Dr Charles Olaro, in a statement said the Congolese refugees contracted the disease from their country.

Efforts

The Resident District Commissioner, Mr John Stephen Ekoom, said security has heightened surveillance along the Uganda-DR Congo border to ensure that all refugees entering Uganda are screened.

According to the Health ministry, the most affected settlements are Kyangwali and Kyaka II in Hoima and Kyegegwa districts, respectively.

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