Cholera Outbreak in East and West Africa – Infections Example

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"Cholera Outbreak in East and West Africa" is a marvellous  example of a paper on infectionsCholera is a bacteria-caused disease that affects the small intestines. It is caused by Vibrio cholera. After infection, the bacteria may take from twelve hours to five hours to manifest itself in the body and the onset of the first symptoms which include vomiting and diarrhoea. The vomiting and diarrhoea are so severe that the patient suffers critical dehydration which can lead to loss of life if left unattended to for some hours. Rice water is a fingerprint of cholera infection and screening for the presence of the bacteria is done to rule out the presence or absence of the disease.

Transmission basically occurs due to the ingestion of contaminated food or water  (Ramamurthy, 2008). Flood-hit areas are hit more by cholera epidemics since the people have to drink water that is infected with the bacteria. Oral vaccines have been developed to counter cholera attacks in prone areas. This essay will look at cholera outbreaks in East and West Africa which are severely affected by the disease and the steps that have been taken to reduce the mortality rate  (McElroy, 2009). In Kenya, cholera still remains to be a serious disease claiming more than eleven thousand lives annually.

This is catapulted by the constant floods that affect the country in the rainy season  (Stoltsfus, 2014). According to a study done in 2009 to address the cholera outbreaks in the country, it was established that the disease remains an issue of national concern due to the fact that people were not heeding the best modes of sanitation and the health facilities were far from reach and hence could not serve to address the arising problems.

Failure to prepare well for floods was also cited as another factor.   According to (Amaah, 2014), who was addressing the outbreaks in Cameroon, an effective fight against the disease requires in-depth knowledge of the location where people are being affected and the dynamics of the bacteria. His results showed that a number of cultural and socio-cultural factors facilitated the spread of the disease and hence called for public sensitisation to address the issues. It is totally impossible to counter the disease outbreak without engaging the locals who are at most affected by it.

It is therefore important to include them in the plan for establishing a preventive method for the same. In Guinea Bissau, research done showed that water bags acted as potential vehicles for transmitting the bacteria and therefore increasing the infections among the people who used them  (Bordalo and Machado, 2014). Bissau is the capital city of Guinea Bissau and due to the water issues in the city water bags are used to get some. However, the researchers attributed the high prevalence of the disease in the region to the use of the water bags.

This called for stern measures to use better methods of water delivery such as the use of pipes and quit the current one. These studies show the need to devise ways to counter the outbreaks which are quite often in developing countries. The use of cholera vaccines in the places often hit by the disease has been on the use and it is the only way that has been used to avert the high mortality rates recorded courtesy of it.


Amaah, P. (2014). Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of the Knowledge, Attitudes and Social Representation of Cholera in the Extreem Northern Region in Cameroon: the case of Maroua I, Maroua Ii and Mokolo. Pan African Medical Journal, 11-24.

Bordalo and Machado. (2014). Water bags as a Potential Vehicle for Transmitting Disease in West Africaa Capital, Bissau. Journal of International Heath, 1-3.

McElroy, A. a. (2009). Medical Anthropology in Ecological Perspective. New York: Boulder Company.

Ramamurthy. (2008). Antibiotic Resistance in Vibrio cholerae: Vibrio cholerae Genomics and Molecular Biology. California: Caister Academic Press.

Stoltsfus, J. D., Carter, J. Y., Akpinar-Elci, M., Matu, M., Kimotho, V., Giganti, M. Y. (2014). Interaction between Climatic, Environment and Demographic Factors on Cholera outbreaks in Kenya. Nairobi: African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF).

Stoltsfus, J. D.-E. (2014). Interaction between Climatic, Environment and Demographic Factors in Cholera Outbreaks in Kenya. Nairobi: African Medical Research Foundation (AMREF).

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