First AIDS, Now Cholera: Zimbabwe's Newest Orphans
December 10, 2008
A cholera outbreak affecting nine of Zimbabwe's 10 provinces is threatening a population already devastated by HIV/AIDS and hunger. Of Zimbabwe's adults, 16 percent are HIV-infected, and 1 million children in the country have lost one or both parents to HIV/AIDS or poverty-related disease.
In Budiriro, about 18 miles west of Chitungwiza, nine-year-old Bongani and his six-year-old brother Sibanengi recently lost parents to cholera and AIDS. Their father died of AIDS last year, and the boys' mother died of cholera just days ago.
Last week, Zimbabwe's government asked for international assistance in ending the outbreak, but much more needs to be done to save thousands of people from dying of cholera, experts say. "For example, the supply of safe drinking water and proper disposal of garbage and sewage has to improve quickly," said Dr. Marcus Bachmann of Doctors Without Borders.
12.09.2008; Columbus Mavhunga
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.