By MOFFAT CHAZINGWA –
FOUR people have died from typhoid on the Copperbelt this year, Provincial Permanent Secretary Howard Sikwela has said.
Rev Sikwela said the four deaths were out of the 19 confirmed cases of typhoid recorded in the province this year.
He said this yesterday when he opened the provincial epidemics preparedness, prevention, management and control committee meeting held at Moba Hotel in Kitwe.
Rev Sikwela said 76 suspected typhoid cases had this year been recorded of which 19 were confirmed with four people dying from the disease.
“The reporting districts were Kalulushi, Luanshya, Masaiti, Mpongwe, Mufulira and Ndola,”Rev Sikwela said.
The permanent secretary has meanwhile said the province has received logistics for use in an event of an Ebola outbreak particularly on points of entry, namely Simon Mwansa International Airport, Sakania, Mokambo and Kasumbalesa borders.
Rev Sikwela said health staff in all districts had been sensitised and put on high alert on the Ebola threat, especially in districts sharing borders with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
“Health authorities are currently conducting surveillance for Ebola at points of entry and health education has been intensified in all districts to provide information to the public on the disease,” he said.
Communicable Diseases Control specialist Teddy Sokesi called on members of the public not panic in view of the reported Ebola outbreak in DRC.
Dr Sokesi said the reported Ebola in DRC did not imply the disease had spread because the DRC one was different from the one in West Africa.
He said nonetheless, sufficient measures which they would continuously be updating, had been put in place to counter the Ebola threat.
Dr Sokesi, who gave a presentation on the Ebola threat, said targets for screening were people coming from regions with the outbreak of the disease or those that had come into contact with suspected Ebola patients.
Meanwhile, Mufulira District Commissioner Chanda Kabwe said Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) had come on board to join effort with health authorities in the district putting up measures to manage the Ebola threat.