Cholera immunisation targets 161 000 in Neno

Cholera immunisation targets 161 000 in Neno

Partners in Health and the Ministry of Health will vaccinate at least 161 000 people against cholera in Neno.

The district was not part of the vaccination campaign in May this year which targeted eight districts of the Southern Region. 

Speaking on Monday during the launch of the vaccination, Partners in Health chief operating officer Basimenye Nhlema said the district has so far registered 107 cholera cases and two deaths.

“As a district we started registering cholera cases in March 2022. We are one of the districts heavily affected by the outbreak. So up to now we continue to register new cases,” she said.

A woman displays cholera vaccination certificates

Nhlema said the five-day exercise will cost K80 million.

“We have supported government with logistics needed during the training of volunteers on how to administer the cholera vaccine. We also transported the vaccine from Blantyre,” she said.

Neno district environmental health officer Margaret Mikwamba said the district is registering high number of cases because of lack of clean water.

“Lower Neno is registering more cholera cases because there is no piped water. There are boreholes and the water is salty. So, people prefer to fetch water from rivers,” she said.

Mikwamba said people have not responded positively to the cholera vaccine due to rumours that it has been mixed with Covid-19 vaccine.

Neno district education manager Sonnex Likharuwe said they will work with mother groups, parents and teachers to sensitise people to the vaccination campaign.

The first phase of cholera vaccination targeted about 1.9 million people in eight districts of the Southern Region.

The districts are Nsanje, Chikwawa, Phalombe, Mulanje, Blantyre, Machinga, Balaka and Mangochi.

As of Monday, the country had cumulatively registered 1 009 cholera cases and 41 deaths.

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