Typhoid breaks out in Mbala


TYPHOID has broken out in Mbala district of Northern Province with hundred cases reported and one death recorded for far.

Mbala Municipal Council public relations officer David Simfukwe confirmed the outbreak and said the local authority in conjunction with the district medical office had embarked on water quality monitoring in all affected areas.

Mr. Simfukwe said over 70 percent of the cases were recorded in urban areas as most water supply pipes were allegedly punctured by the residents thereby exposing the drinking water to contamination.

He also said further examination from water kiosks indicated that they lacked chlorine thereby exposing resident to more dangers of the disease.

He said for the authority to contain the outbreak, the council and the district medical office had started distributing chlorine to households and conducting door-to-door disinfection and sensitization.

“Mbala Municipal Council health department in conjunction with the district medical office wishes to inform the general public that there is an outbreak of typhoid in the district, with an accumulative number of 100cases reported and one death recorded. The local authority and the Ministry of Health has since embarked on water quality monitoring in areas where the cases were coming from.

“More than 70% of the cases are from urban areas serviced by Chambeshi Water and Sewerage Company whose water lines have been punctured by the residents, thus, exposing water to contamination,” he said

Mr Simfukwe said from the water samples taken from the water utility company; the major concern had been the  chlorine residual which has been absent from some tap water.

This meant that if drawn and kept in homes any risk of contamination will mean  no room for continued disinfection,”

He said the medical office had started contact tracing and treating patients at household level and that all food handlers were being tested and treated at both public and private premises.

People in the area had been advised to avoid buying and eating cooked food from streets, local alcohol brews as well as consumption of slaughtered animals in open abattoirs.