Cholera

12 January 2009

64 new cholera cases in SA

Some 77 new suspected and confirmed cholera cases were reported in South Africa on Monday as parts of the Tubatse river in Limpopo tested positive for the disease.

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Some 77 new suspected and confirmed cholera cases were reported in South Africa on Monday as parts of the Tubatse river in Limpopo tested positive for the disease.

There were 64 new suspected cholera cases reported in Limpopo and Gauteng. A total of 13 confirmed cholera cases were reported in the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and North West.

Limpopo Water Affairs chief director Alson Matukane said ongoing tests of water resources in the province indicated that parts of the Tubatse river in the Steelpoort area were contaminated with cholera.

However, he said other parts of the river tested negative.

"It seems areas that tested positive are where people use plastic containers to carry water," he said.

Matukane said they were still investigating if the water was contaminated by human beings or the environment.

Limpopo health spokesman Phuti Seloba said about 48 new suspected cases were reported, taking the total number of those affected by the disease in the province to 1 802.

He said 11 of the 48 new cases were reported in the areas where the Tubatse river tested positive.

The province's cholera death toll remained at nine.

Meanwhile, the number of new cases had increased in other South African provinces.

Gauteng health spokeswoman Phumelele Kaunda reported the second highest increased number of suspected cases at 16, bringing the total of people affected in the province to 160 from Friday's 144.

Of the 160 suspected cases, only 30 were confirmed as cholera.

The Gauteng cholera death toll still stood at three.

Western Cape health spokeswoman Faiza Steyn said they had seven confirmed cases by Monday.

The province had not had any cholera-related deaths.

KwaZulu-Natal reported four new suspected cases in the Zululand district.

Spokesman for the province's health department Chris Maxon said the four cases increased KwaZulu-Natal's confirmed number of cholera cases to six.

The North West, which had reported two cases in December last year, recorded two new cases in the first week of January.

However, the province's health spokeswoman Nthabiseng Makhongoana said all cases had since been cleared.

Of the most recent patients, one was admitted to a private hospital and another to a public hospital in Rustenburg.

Makhongoana said one of the patients, a Mozambican man, was discharged last week and the other, a Zimbabwean woman, was released from hospital on Monday.

Eastern Cape health spokesman Sizwe Kupelo said they had not had any new cholera cases since last month's confirmed one, which was cured. - (Sapa)

 

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