Health Department outlines symptoms of cholera

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The Health Department has again outlined the symptoms of cholera, saying people who are suspected to have the bacterial disease must seek immediate assistance at medical health facilities.

The nationwide death toll from cholera now stands at 25.

A 73-year-old woman died from cholera in Mpumalanga on Thursday, 23 people are known to have passed away from cholera in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, and one in the Free State province.

Symptoms include:

  • Watery diarrhea.
  • Stomach cramps.
  • Vomiting.
  • Dehydration.

The Health Department’s spokesperson Foster Mohale says, “The symptoms include watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, vomiting and dehydration. If anyone experiences one or two symptoms, don’t waste time because another challenge that we experienced at the beginning in Hammanskraal is that people will only present themselves late, after they experience these symptoms. So, now we are saying that even if you experience one or two symptoms or suspect that you have it, don’t waste time.”

Cholera Outbreak in Hammanskraal

Water quality

In 2019, the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) found that the water in Hammanskraal was not fit for human consumption after residents of the area complained about its quality.

The commission’s former Gauteng head Buang Jones says the government is not taking the issue seriously.

“The problem is poor management of the water infrastructure in the city of Tshwane, poor planning, inadequate allocation of budget to address this issue, and a lack of political will and community involvement in finding lasting solutions. And failing water treatment plants in the city of Tshwane are partly responsible. And this has been happening since 2004. And the commission at the time when I was still there, we called on the national government to declare the situation in Hammanskraal a national disaster, but to date, this has not been done.”

Update into Hammanskraal cholera outbreak investigation