A 73-year-old female patient passed on at Mmametlhake hospital on 26 May after testing positive for cholera. She had diarrhea, nausea and vomiting after eating a tin of fish during the day.
According to the Department of Health, the patient resided in Phaphamang Section in Phake, Dr JS Moroka Local Municipality. Cholera sample was taken and forwarded to the laboratory for investigation. The interim results returned positive, and the department has deployed an Outbreak Response Team to investigate possible sources of infection and contact tracing.
“We are going to conduct intensive community awareness campaigns. We advise communities to be on high alert of cholera. Cholera is one of the diarrhoea disease caused by bacteria called vibrio cholerae,” read the department’s statement.
Symptoms include diarrhoea, which is painless and watery-like, nausea, vomiting and fever in children. The disease spreads through ingestion/drinking of contaminated water with human faeces. The illness may start from a few hours to five days of infection. Anyone who has sudden diarrhoea, nausea, and vomiting should immediately seek medical assistance at the local health facility.
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In Gauteng, 23 people have died in Hammanskraal, Tshwane following a cholera outbreak. According to the Health Department minister, Dr Joe Phaahla said Tshwane was the current epicentre of the outbreak after cases had been identified in Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Vredefort, Parys in the Free State. The source of cholera is currently under investigation.