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UNICEF intensifies support in fight against cholera in Mozambique

Actions gear up as the epidemic worsens: bladders, chlorine and cleaning tools sent to the affected areas – Support for information campaign

MAPUTO, 27 January 2004 – With the cholera outbreak in Mozambique affecting more and more people, UNICEF has intensified its support to the affected locations in close collaboration with the local authorities, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and NGOs. “The prevention activities are key to limit the impact of the current outbreak. UNICEF is supporting the door-to-door information campaign by activists in Maputo City, the provision of posters on cholera prevention and their dissemination in the schools of the capital,” UNICEF Representative Marie-Pierre Poirier said on Tuesday. In addition, UNICEF is supporting radio discussions on cholera prevention, broadcast by the Child-to-Child-radio network of Radio Moçambique.

UNICEF is also supporting the Cholera Treatment Centres (CTCs) in Maputo City, and in Boane and Namaacha districts in Maputo Province. Following requests from the Health authorities, UNICEF is collaborating with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to strengthen the human resources available to respond to the epidemic and to support the centres’ environmental sanitation needs. “We need more health workers and other staff at these centres, and more support to those already working there, because they are overwhelmed by the increase of cases,” Ms. Poirier said. 

As part of its ongoing Emergency Preparedness & Response programme, UNICEF has been supporting Government institutions in pre-positioning emergency supplies, including cholera prevention and response equipment and consumables, such as water bladders, chlorine, cleaning tools and hygiene education materials. These are now going to be used in the affected areas, and UNICEF provides logistical support for their rapid delivery: A Truck left last Thursday for Sofala, Zambezia and Nampula Provinces with 6 bladders and 3 tons of chorine requested by the provincial authorities.
The current cholera outbreak started just before Christmas. It is now affecting Maputo City and five provinces (Maputo, Gaza, Sofala, Zambézia and Nampula). By Monday, almost 4,700 cases were registered with a total of 26 deaths. Maputo City reports the highest number of cases: its Cholera Treatment Centre in Mavalane received more than 500 new patients over the weekend. Around 300 of the cases in Maputo City were children under 7 years of age.

UNICEF is prepared to further extend its support to the Municipality of Maputo and other affected areas.


For further information, please contact:
Michael Klaus, UNICEF Communication Officer: +258 82-312 182,
Candie Cassabalian, UNICEF Emergency Officer: +258 82-317 916

Please visit also our website www.unicef.org/mozambique




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