1,733 Cholera Cases In Accra

The number of cholera cases recorded in the Greater Accra Region has increased from 500 to 1,733 in just one week, with 20 deaths.

The disease, which broke out two months ago, is fast spreading and has been recorded in almost all the public health facilities in the region. The Osu Klotey sub-metro alone, as at last Friday, had recorded 923 cases.

Health specialists fear the number of cases was likely to increase due to the insanitary condition in the region.

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) has been accused of not preventing the indiscriminate waste disposal in Accra, which had resulted in the outbreak of the disease.

Cholera is an acute oral diarrhoeal illness caused by bacteria known as Vibrio Cholerae and the main symptoms are profuse painless watery diarrhoea without fever and with vomiting of clear fluid.

If the severe diarrhoea and vomiting are not treated during the early stage of infection, it can, within hours, result in life-threatening dehydration.

After recording more than 10,000 cases in 2011, the World Health Organisation (WHO) ranked Ghana as the fifth most cholera endemic country in the world.

The Ghana Health Service, in May this year, alerted the public on the possible outbreak of the disease due to the insanitary conditions coupled with the rains, chocked gutters, and large refuse heaps in the region.

In an interview with The Ghanaian Times yesterday the Deputy Director, Public Health at the Greater Accra Regional Health Directorate, Dr. John Eleeza, said the disease was spreading fast in the region despite the earlier cautions.

He attributed the rate at which it was spreading to the filth that had engulfed the region, poor personal hygiene practices, as well as the lack of access to potable water.

He said a comprehensive public education had been rolled out in the various communities to sensitise the public on the causes and dangers associated with the disease.

He called on the public to observe personal hygiene and ensure sound environmental practices, and urged persons who experience symptoms of the disease to report to the hospitals in time for early treatment.

As part of the measures to bring the disease under control, he said the directorate had supplied the necessary logistics required to address the cases.

Dr. Eleeza appealed to the public to eat food hot. He also urged the public to wash their hands regularly with soap under running water.

By Yaw Kyei & Linda Aryeetey


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