The Ministry of Health has disclosed that the introduction of the consumption of the oral vaccine in cholera affected areas has received positive results from the general public.
Provincial Medical Officer for Lusaka Kennedy Malama noted that the oral vaccine being administered in cholera affected areas like Bauleni, Matero, Kanyama, Chawama and other townships within Lusaka has recorded a 51% turnout.
Dr. Malama said the administering of the oral vaccine is targeted at reaching 5,842 people most of which will be from the cholera affected areas in Lusaka.
He said the intake of the oral vaccines is not mandatory for anyone within and outside the affected area, as it is not the primary principle to the prevention of cholera.
Dr. Malama however pointed out that the vaccine is secondary to other primary preventions like good hygiene and the seeking of medical attention immediately after experiencing cholera symptoms.
He explained that the oral vaccines are being supplied to Zambia with support from the World Health Organisation and the Medicine San Frontier (MSF) from France and Geneva which have also sent representatives to monitor the progress of this exercise.
Dr. Malama also pointed out that the oral vaccines cannot be bought from any pharmacies or chemists but can only be taken from approved outlets such as health centers. The oral vaccine only becomes effective after 10 days of consumption.
He said some of the possible side effects to the vaccines are mild abdominal pains and diarrhea and can differ from person to person.
Dr. Malama has since called on members of the public to practice good hygiene and seek medical attention immediately after experiencing cholera symptoms, as these are the primary principles of cholera prevention.
He further urged members of the public to take part in the intake of the oral vaccines, as they are aimed at preventing cholera, and also to avoid public gatherings until after cholera cases reduce.
Over eight hundred and seven cases of cholera have been recorded in Lusaka since the epidemic broke out two months ago in lusaka province.