Cholera claim five in Abau outbreak

National, Normal

The National- Tuesday, January 11, 2011


FIVE people from Mailu Island in Central’s Abau district died from cholera during the festive period.

Central health authorities believed that the outbreak occurred during the Christmas and New Year period.

Abau district health coordinator Etene Boyama said yesterday that the first cases were reported last Tuesday at the island’s health centre. 

She said 44 people (in severe condition) were admitted and treated including those with mild diarrhoea throughout last week.

Boyama told The National that a team was sent into the area with medical supplies as well as information material to conduct awareness.

She said they managed to contain the spread and the situation was now under control but closely monitored.

More medical supplies have been transported to the Kupiano health centre where they would be taken to Mailu by dinghies on a six- hour journey.

Boyama said Wanigela village was also hit by the outbreak during that same period. 

She said there was a possibility that the Wanigelas from Port Moresby’s Koki settlement, who went up for the holidays could have infected those in the village which caused the spread.

Quick response by health workers at Kupiano health centre helped to contain the spread of the disease.

Boyama said they were now putting together logistics to continue awareness and provide medical assistance to those affected.

Wanigela and Waiori villages located in the Marshall Lagoon area of Abau were hard hit by the disease last June which claimed 11 lives.