Tests underway to find cause of diarrhoea outbreak

Monday, August 6, 2018

The Mpumalanga Provincial Government has called on members of the public, who suspect that they may have diarrhoea, to visit their nearest health facility.

This comes as the provincial government tries to contain a diarrhoea outbreak in the Ehlanzeni region.

“To date, over 1 300 cases of diarrhoea have been reported in health facilities, especially within Mbombela Municipality. The provincial government is further encouraging citizens to go to the nearest health facility immediately if they suspect that they are experiencing diarrhoea, which is mainly in the form of passing loose stools, feeling nauseas and vomiting as well as feeling stomach cramps,” said the spokesperson of Mpumalanga Premier, Zibonele Mncwango.

Of serious concern to the provincial government is that the transmission of the infection seems to be moving from one area to another.

“While the source of this alarming diarrhoea outbreak has not yet been identified, water tests are continuously being conducted by Ehlanzeni District Municipality, the Department of Water and Sanitation as well as the City of Mbombela (Sembcorp Silulumanzi) repetitively on a daily basis,” said Mncwango.

While a battery of tests is underway in search of the cause, residents are being encouraged to exercise caution by continuously washing their hands with soap before eating and after using the toilets, washing hands after changing baby nappies, and after throwing away rubbish.

Citizens are encouraged to prepare food safely by constantly washing or peeling fruit and vegetables, cooking food thoroughly, especially meat, and should store food in a clean and cool place.

“They must continue to exercise precaution before drinking water by pouring a teaspoon of bleach into 25 litres of water, mix well and wait for at least 30 minutes or boil the water at least three minutes.

“The provincial government is conversely satisfied that there are no deaths related to the current diarrhoea outbreak,” said Mncwango. – SAnews.gov.za