Lusaka, Zambia, 2 February – The cholera outbreak in Zambia has now surpassed 15,000 cases and 590 deaths. One of the factors for this crisis is the stigma, which deters individuals from seeking treatment, leading to an increase in "Brought in Dead" cases. In response, CARE Zambia is actively disseminating crucial messages to minimize stigma. Additionally, the organization has pledged a $40,000 grant to bolster response efforts in Lusaka, Southern, and Eastern Provinces.
Since the October 2023 outbreak, cholera has spread to 62 districts across all 10 provinces.warned Chikwe Mbweeda, CARE Zambia Country Director, during a visit to Chelston Level One Hospital in Lusaka.
"While the government-led response is crucial, low funding, limited healthcare capacity, and ongoing water and sanitation issues continue to hamper progress. CARE is committed to collaborating with the government and communities to overcome these challenges and save lives," added Mbweeda.
During her visit, Mbweeda presented the Lusaka District Health Office with essential supplies including granular and liquid chlorine, water storage buckets, megaphones, soap, and disinfectant handwash. This donation aims to support infection prevention, and community outreach, and address the crucial role of Community-Based Volunteers (CBVs) in disseminating information and facilitating referrals. The donated megaphones will empower CBVs to reach more people with life-saving information and address stigmas within communities.
This timely support is crucial. We urge other organizations to follow suit while commending the dedication of CBVs who operate despite significant challenges,said Dr. Janet Muyunda, expressing his gratitude on behalf of the Lusaka DHO.
While CARE's contribution provides vital support, the broader need for resources remains immense. The organization urges other stakeholders, including international donors and private sector partners, to step up their efforts and join the fight against this deadly disease.
For media inquiries, please contact Iolanda Jaquemet, Senior Humanitarian Communications Coordinator, CARE International via: [email protected]