Health Minister announces first Cholera death, as more cases detected in South Africa
Pretoria: The Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla announces the first death linked to the recent cases of cholera detected in South Africa, as the number of laboratory confirmed-cases rises to five.
This follows an announcement of three cases a few weeks ago.
The 4th case is a 28-year-old male residing in Alexandra Township with no local or international travel history.
The patient presented himself at the Edenvale Hospital Emergency Centre with a four-day history of diarrhoea, vomiting and body weakness.
A specimen was collected for testing and the patient was not admitted at the hospital but managed as an outpatient and given treatment to take home, and requested to return for his results which came back positive.
The outbreak response team conducted a case investigation visited the patient’s residence and workplace the following day.
The 5th case is a 24-year-old male residing in Emandleni Wattville, Benoni in Ekurhuleni with no travel history.
The patient presented with profuse watery diarrhea and was admitted at Tambo Memorial Hospital. His results confirmed positive status and sadly he passed away few days later.
One of his contacts is still in hospital and further investigation is being conducted.
The body of the deceased will be transported to KwaZulu-Natal for burial and health officials will advise the bereaved family and undertakers of the safe burial precautions to prevent the spread of the disease.
Cholera mainly spreads through contaminated/polluted water.
People can become infected directly through drinking contaminated water, or indirectly through eating contaminated food.
Symptoms include diarrhoea dehydration, vomiting and body weakness.
Members of the public are reminded to maintain hand hygiene to prevent possible transmission.
All people who experience cholera-like symptoms, with or without local or international travel history, are encouraged immediately visit their nearest health facility for screening and testing to ensure early detection and successful treatment, if test positive.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Republic of South Africa: Department of Health.