Diarrhoea cases surge in Bulawayo


CASES of diarrhoea in Bulawayo spiked in August to 286 cases from 123 the previous month, a council report shows.


The country’s second largest city has largely been unscathed by the cholera outbreak that killed 49 and infected over 10 000 countrywide as well as from the typhoid that affected mainly Gweru.

But a Bulawayo City Council (BCC) health, housing and education committee report shows that the city was struggling to contain diarrhoeal cases despite the enforcement of environmental and health by-laws.

“Diarrhoeal cases (286) were the highest in the month of August 2018, followed by a total of 21 dog bite cases,” the council report read.

“Rotavirus and Escherichia coli are the two most common aetiological agents of moderate severe diarrhoea in developing countries such as Zimbabwe.”

Rotavirus is the most common cause of diarrhoeal diseases among infants and young children in the country.

A rotavirus infection usually starts within two days of exposure to the virus. Initial symptoms are fever and vomiting.

Escherichia coli refers to a wide range of bacteria that can cause various diseases, including pneumonia, urinary tract infections, and diarrhoea.

The council report showed that the cases were even higher in June, with 416 cases recorded. The council said it had improved provision of safe drinking water, sanitation as well as health and hygiene education.