In Kenya, authorities are preparing measures to stop a cholera epidemic from spreading to Nairobi.?
In Kenya, authorities are preparing measures to stop a cholera epidemic from spreading to Nairobi. The epidemic is affecting the whole East African region, and in neighbouring Tanzania health officials say 300 people have died of the disease since last November -- though Reuters report unofficial figures put the death toll at near 1,000.
SYNOPSIS: Though no cases of the disease have been diagnosed in Nairobi, medical experts are afraid it would thrive in the slum areas around the city. There are an estimated 150,000 please living in the shanty towns. On Tuesday (4 April) Nairobi City Council accepted medical advice that the worst slums should be pulled down as soon as possible.
The Council has also decided that the drainage system should be improved, along with the collection of refuse, which at the moment is cleared about once every three months. They also want to start a campaign against flies and mosquitoes and improve the water supply. Further measures that might be taken are reported to include raising the standard of cleanliness at roadside canteens -- where many of the poorer residents eat. These kiosks were closed during the last cholera epidemic in 1975.
This present outbreak has so far claimed the lives of four people, say health officials. They put the number of cases diagnosed since early March at 132. Last week a spokesman for Kenya's Health Ministry said the country had enough equipment and medicines to cope with the outbreak. He said that apart from areas already affected, near the Tanzanian border coastal province, the risk in the rest of the country was minimal, and the disease was "under control".