Hammanskraal – At least 10 people – including a 3-year-old and nine adults – have died of cholera in Hammanskraal, the City of Tshwane has revealed.
“This comes after lab results of stool specimens of 19 people who presented at Jubilee District Hospital with symptoms of diarrhoea, stomach cramps, and nausea confirmed that it is cholera,” City of Tshwane health authorities said on Sunday.
Since last week Monday, (15 May 2023 to date), 95 people from Kanana, Suurman, Majaneng, Green Field, Carousel View, Lephengville and Sekampaneng have been seen at the hospital with similar symptoms.
“Currently, there are 37 people admitted at the hospital with Cholera symptoms and unfortunately, 10 people have demised,” the City of Tshwane said.
Gauteng Health and Wellness MEC Nomantu Nkomo-Ralehoko, on Sunday visited the hospital together with the City of Tshwane MMC for Health, Rina Marx.
The government officials were updated on the situation and immediate interventions that involved increasing response capacity at Jubilee Hospital.
MEC Nkomo-Ralehok said her department made available two additional wards to accommodate patients who could not be immediately admitted on arrival at Jubilee Hospital.
We have also mobilised additional resources which include medical and nursing staff from surrounding hospitals and local clinics to improve capacity for the growing need for medical care,” said MEC Nkomo-Ralehoko.
“Furthermore, additional linen has been delivered from the provincial laundry to activate the extra beds,
The provincial, district and municipality outbreak response teams continue to do advocacy work to raise awareness among communities.
The teams engaged with churches, local training institutions and various media platforms, as well as loud hailing in the affected areas.
MEC Nkomo-Ralehoko and MMC Marx have engaged with concerned political parties, Councillors, and community leaders in the area who have committed to assisting with community education.
The MEC has urged the public to take extra precautionary measures and maintain proper hand hygiene.
We would like to reiterate and urge the public to avoid known or suspected contaminated food, water, and surfaces and wash hands thoroughly with soap before handling food or after using the bathroom to prevent possible infection,” said MEC Nkomo-Ralehoko.
It is also important that people never drink water from unsafe sources such as rivers, dams, streams, unless boiled or disinfected.
In addition, the City of Tshwane has issued a notice urging communities of Hammanskraal not to drink tap water and has supplied water tankers to the hospital and surrounding communities.
The department has also engaged with both the Department of Water and Sanitation and Department of Human Settlements to add additional capacity to support the municipality with water infrastructure and related issues.
The public is advised to report to their nearest health facilities when they present with symptoms such as diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps and dehydration symptoms, so they can receive treatment.
MMC Marx said the City of Tshwane will mobilise additional resources in the form of social workers to provide counselling and social relief for the affected families.
The public is further urged to be extra vigilant in the coming days while all spheres of government work with multiple stakeholders to curb the spread of the cholera outbreak.