Lae residents warned that ‘cholera is still around’

Lae News, Normal


HEALTH officials engaged in the cholera taskforce have warned Lae settlement and urban residents that, “cholera is still around” and that the necessary precautions must still be undertaken.
A concern raised at the cholera meeting yesterday was that many residents had failed to realise the meaning of the word “epidemic” or were simply ignorant of the fact that cholera was still active and infecting people.
This issue was raised by a staff member of Medecins Sans Frontieres who said she had encountered people who though that cholera was no longer around.
Apart from that she was also concerned about the sale of prohibited food at markets and by
street vendors.
She said the task force must now use the media to tell people that cholera is still around.
This week the taskforce will review its six functions and discuss ways in which these functions can be reactivated to address cholera, after being “inactive” and “demoralised” due to the lack of funding.
On Jan 8, K320,000 was allocated to the province by the National Cholera Task Force.
The task force officials said at the meeting that more emphasis should be given to surveillance and awareness activities.
They said police should be equipped to visit “hotspot” areas to provide awareness and stop the sale of prohibited food.
Meanwhile cumulative figures for confirmed cholera cases stand at 323.
Doctor in charge of the cholera treatment centre, Dr Dan Aisi said that they are now seeing one to two cases a day.
He said that these cases are now emerging from the settlements of the Bumbu area.
Outside Lae, the Markham district is becoming a concern as cases are being reported from all 40 villages in the area.