AFRICA/GUINEA - Cholera cases are reduced thanks to enhanced prevention

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Conakry (Agenzia Fides) - With only 2 cases of cholera recorded in 2011, Guinea has avoided the epidemic that has infected 85 000 people and killed 2,500 in the first ten months of the year in West and Central Africa. After the epidemic of 2009, the government and humanitarian agencies have enhanced the country's commitment to the prevention, making chlorine more available to disinfect water, spreading a greater culture on hand hygiene and storage of water resources and improving the access to drinking water in schools and villages. These efforts have given their fruit. Prevention has worked better than before thanks to greater awareness, widespread by humanitarian agencies, giving information on what and hoe cholera spreads from one country to another.
In coastal areas of Guinea, including the capital Conakry, there is evidence that fish is a very effective carrier of the virus through their feces, it transmits the disease in the markets of all cities. The cases have decreased dramatically when the storage and transportation of the fish were cleaned. About 95% of the population of Conakry have access to safe drinking water. The NGO Action contre la faim continues to carry out prevention campaigns in setting up street theater in the areas most at risk, distributing from one house to another hygiene kits and giving more information on the subject. The phenomenon is currently under control, but requires a more holistic approach to health and hygiene to prevent future outbreaks. However, the virus of cholera will not disappear in the short term given that its nature has changed in the region and, according to experts, there will always be regular peaks. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 13/12/2011)