The Ministry of Health has confirmed a Cholera outbreak in parts of Kampala City and that 7 people are currently undergoing treatment at China-Uganda Friendship Hospital in Naguru.
Three of these cases are from one family residing in Mpigi District while the other four are from two families residing in Kalerwe in Kampala City, according to a Monday statement signed by Dr. Henry G. Mwebesa, the acting Director General Health Services.
The ministry attributed the outbreak to ongoing heavy rains which have brought floods and contamination of water sources because of poor hygiene and sanitation, and high-water table in certain districts.
“This will favor the spread of the outbreak of infectious and communicable diseases such as Cholera, Typhoid, Dysentery and Malaria in several districts,” the statement added.
In order to avert further spread of the disease, two isolation wards have been set up at Mulago National Referral Hospital and Naguru hospital.
The Ministry of Health has appealed to the general public to boil all drinking water or add Chlorine “water guard or aquatab”, open the water drainage channels around homes and drain stagnant water and wash hands with soap and clean water after using the toilet and before eating food.
The ministry also urges people to cook food thoroughly and eat it while still hot, always wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly with clean water before eating them, and where possible peel before eating.
It also appeals to people to avoid eating cold food or drinking fluids packed in used plastic bottles or ‘buveera’, collect water for household use from National Water and Sewage Cooperation (NWSC) taps and avoid water from wells or springs because they may be contaminated by disease causing organisms as well as seek early treatment from the nearest Health Facility upon onset of symptoms.
Cholera is a serious acute infectious disease characterized by watery diarrhea and vomiting and kills a person within hours. It is spread through eating and drinking food contaminated with feaces of an infected person.
Other factors responsible for the spread of Cholera include; poor personal hygiene such as not washing hands after using the latrine, using contaminated water, poor sanitation as occurs in open defecation, eating foods or drinks prepared under unhygienic conditions.