Health Minister leads high level team to Limpopo to assess outbreak
8 December 2008
Health Minister Barbara Hogan will tomorrow morning, 9 December lead a high level team of senior officials, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), World Health Organisation (WHO) representatives and experts from the National Institute of Communicable Diseases as part of plans to contain the further spread of cholera in Limpopo and some parts of the country.
The outbreak, which has so far claimed close to eight lives, has so far been largely confined to certain parts of Limpopo, especially those areas much closer to Zimbabwe such as Musina and Madimbo which have seen an increasing number of patients crossing the border from Zimbabwe. Since the outbreak, the National Outbreak Response Team made up of officials and communicable diseases experts from both the national and provincial health department in Limpopo, Water Affairs and Forestry and Provincial and Local Government and WHO amongst others, was established as part of advising and guiding the country's response to the outbreak. A temporary healthcare centre has since been established at Musina showgrounds as part of alleviating pressure on the town's only public health facility.
Amongst others, the centre provides re-hydration services to patients and only those who fail to respond to such treatment care are referred to hospitals.
The visit tomorrow will see the health Minister getting a briefing from the team stationed in Musina and then make a tour of Musina show grounds. From Musina the Minister and her delegation, comprising her deputy Dr Molefi Sefularo, Dr Stella Anyangwe (WHO Chief representative in South Africa) and Dr Licille Bloomberg of the Institute of Communicable Diseases, will travel to Madimbo, about 100 kilometres away to assess the situation at the clinic in the area which reportedly is seeing a large number of patients with cholera. After the tour, the Minister will host a media briefing at Madimbo clinic.
Members of the media are invited and welcomed to join the Minister in her tour including the media briefing at Madimbo clinic scheduled to take place at 14h30.
For more information contact:
Cell: 079 517 3333
Cell: 079 498 2898
Issued by: Department of Health
8 December 2008