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Zimbabwe's Health Ministry Targets Diarrheal Diseases in New Year


Though the health care system has recovered to some extent and sanitary conditions are better in some locations, Harare says it now lacks funds to address the factors that caused the 2008-2009 cholera epidemic

Zimbabwe's Health Ministry is stepping up its fight against typhoid and other water-borne diarrheal diseases whose outbreaks call up memories of the 2008-2009 cholera epidemic which claimed more than 4,200 lives from nearly 100,000 cases.

Dr. Portia Manangazira, the Health Ministry’s head of epidemiology and disease control, said the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States have sent two experts to help authorities in Harare deal with the problem and prevent a new epidemic.

Though Zimbabwe's national health care system has recovered to some extent from near-collapse in 2008 and sanitary conditions are better in some locations, Harare says it lacks funds to address the problems that gave rise to the deadly epidemic.

Manangazira said South Africa has also sent a specialist to help Harare deal with the crisis, and the Cabinet is being updated weekly on public health developments.

Harare Deputy Mayor Emmanuel Chiroto said the city is worried about a new outbreak of cholera as it cannot come up with funds to address water and sanitation issues.

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