Zambia's Cholera Outbreak Gains Support
A United Nations (UN) team led by Beatrice Mutali, the Resident Coordinator in Zambia, recently confirmed it is supporting the Republic of Zambia's response to a cholera outbreak.
Zambia's Ministry of Health declared the cholera outbreak on January 26, 2023.
Cholera outbreaks in three districts have been reported, with 90 cases and three related fatalities confirmed.
As of February 10, 2023, the UN team is providing technical support to authorities while mobilizing funding to bridge a gap of $32 million for risk communication, water and sanitation, food, and other items.
Since December 2022, UNICEF has provided 4.5 tonnes of granular chlorine, 20,000 bottles of liquid chlorine for household water treatment, 250 containers of disinfectant, and other critical supplies to keep the water safe.
For its part, the World Health Organization (WHO) is working with Zambian authorities to strengthen assessment capacities along with surveillance, contact tracing, and lab preparations for cholera vaccination.
As of February 12, 2023, extensive cholera outbreaks have been reported in Haiti, Malawi, and Syria.
The WHO has approved various cholera vaccines for use in 2023.
Unfortunately, these cholera vaccines are not currently available in the U.S.
In addition to cholera, the U.S. CDC suggests various vaccinations before visiting Zambia.
These travel vaccines are offered in the U.S. at certified clinics and pharmacies.