Mozambique's Cyclone Survivors Face Rising Threat of Cholera

A woman covers her face at a camp for displaced survivors of cyclone Idai in Beira Mozambique Tuesday April 2 2019. Mozambican and international health workers raced Monday to contain a cholera outbreak in the cyclone-hit city of Beira and surroundin

Mozambique's Cyclone Survivors Face Rising Threat of Cholera

"The procurement of vaccines is one of several approaches Unicef and its partners are taking to curb the spread of cholera, along with re-establishing water treatment systems and distributing water purification products".

Supplies that will help stave off the growing threat of disease that many communities are facing, including clean water and mosquito nets, were also provided.

The Emirates Red Crescent, ERC, has reinforced its efforts to assist people affected by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, benefitting over 75,000 people in 17 districts in the three provinces that were most affected by the cyclone, which hit three countries in the southeast of the African continent. So far no cholera deaths have been confirmed, the report said. The disease, largely caused by the ingestion of contaminated food and water, "can turn a crisis like this into a full-blown catastrophe".

Cholera is endemic to Mozambique, which has had regular outbreaks over the past five years.

"This cyclone has already caused enough devastation and misery across south east Africa; we have to hope these vaccines will help stop a potentially major outbreak and prevent yet more suffering".

More than 1700 people have been infected since the outbreak was declared on March 27, officials noted.

A baby recieves an oral cholera vacination.

Nearly 900,000 doses of the cholera vaccine arrived in Beira yesterday. They were taken from the global cholera vaccine stockpile, which is fully-funded by Gavi.

Participants also discussed how to support a well-coordinated response, focusing on immediate humanitarian needs, as well as sustainable medium and long-term recovery and reconstruction in the aftermath of the cyclone.

World Health Organization said since the stockpile was launched in 2013, millions of doses every year have helped tackle outbreaks across the globe.

The U.N. health agency has shipped some 900,000 doses of oral cholera vaccine to Mozambique, where Cyclone Idai last month flattened homes and unleashed widespread flooding. In the fifteen years between 1997 and 2012, just 1.5 million doses of oral cholera vaccine were used worldwide.

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