Democratic Republic of Congo: 2 million people targeted by cholera vaccination campaign (WHO)

The current vaccination is the second massive campaign in the country this year. In March and July, more than 1.4 million people were vaccinated against cholera in Haut-Katanga province, in the southeast of the country.

“Cholera is a dangerous infection that can kill within hours if left untreated, but it is predictable and preventable. In addition to vaccines, which are one of the effective measures against the disease, it is also necessary to provide clean water and strengthen hygiene and sanitation to prevent the spread of the epidemic ”, said Dr. Amédée Prosper Djiguimdé, Head of the office of the WHO in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

More than 150 deaths in 16 of the 26 provinces of the country

So far this year, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has reported a total of 8,279 suspected cholera cases and 153 deaths in 16 of the country’s 26 provinces. Coverage with a full dose of two rounds of oral cholera vaccine provides protection for up to five years.

The campaign takes place in the provinces of Haut-Lomami, South Kivu and Tanganyika, the most affected by cholera since last August, and will cover 13 sanitary zones with around 4 million doses delivered by the Global Task Force on fight against cholera. (GTFCC). Approximately 3,600 health workers, including vaccinators and community mobilizers, have been deployed to carry out the six-day campaign.

The World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF and other partners are supporting health authorities in the rollout of the campaign. Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, provided operational funds for this activity.

Cholera is a highly contagious disease spread through contaminated food or water. It causes severe diarrhea and dehydration that must be treated immediately to avoid death, which can occur in as little as a few hours, and to prevent the spread of the disease on a large scale in a high-risk environment.

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