Munyaradzi Musiiwa, Midlands Correspondent
The number of reported cases of people who have succumbed to typhoid following an outbreak of the waterborne disease in Gweru has risen to seven with new cases of diarrhoea being reported in Ascot and Mtapa high density suburbs.
It is suspected that the number of people who succumbed to the disease could be more as some cases were not reported after Gweru City Council allegedly concealed the disease for close to a month before it was discovered by the Ministry of Health and Child Care.
Midlands Provincial Medical Director Dr Simon Nyadundu said close to 130 people were treated of suspected typhoid on Heroes’ Day only while two others had died.
Dr Nyadundu said the ministry, together with the task force set to fight the disease, was investigating new diarrhoea cases reported in Ascot high density suburb.
“Yesterday (Monday) only we treated 129 people. The number of people who have died so far is now seven. Two more people died yesterday (Monday). We have also reports of diarrhoea cases in Ascot high density suburb and we are just treating them as such. We are still carrying out investigations to establish the source of the disease,” he said.
Dr Nyadundu said the Health and Child Care Ministry was making frantic efforts to combat the disease in Gweru. He said residents in Mkoba 15, 18 and 20, which are the worst affected areas, have since started receiving water treatment tablets as well as water containers to stop the spread of the disease.
“We are distributing water treatment tablets in areas where there have been cases of suspected typhoid. We have set a task force which is meeting every day. Our teams are investigating all cases of diarrhoea in all suburbs so that it does not spread to other areas,” he said.