Intended for healthcare professionals


Cholera: Malawi is in grip of its deadliest outbreak

BMJ 2023; 380 doi: (Published 09 February 2023) Cite this as: BMJ 2023;380:p328

Linked Opinion

Cholera is back but the world is looking away

  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. Kent

Malawi is experiencing the deadliest outbreak of cholera in the country’s history, and the World Health Organization has warned that the situation is likely to get worse without strong interventions.

Although Malawi has experience in controlling cholera outbreaks, WHO said that concurrent outbreaks of polio and covid-19, along with the large geographical spread of the outbreak and the high case numbers, meant that the current burden was overstretching national response capacity and resources. On top of this, multiple cholera outbreaks are ongoing worldwide, stretching the limited global stocks of vaccines, tests, and treatments.

The Malawi government declared a public health emergency on 5 December 2022, considering the wide geographical spread of the disease through all 29 districts and a consistently high case …

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