KATHMANDU, Aug 22: Epidemiology and Disease Control Division (EDCD) of the Department of Health Services (DoHS) has said that it is considering administering cholera vaccine to the people living in the highly affected areas of Lalitpur, where the deadly disease has been spreading for the last one month.
Officials said that they were weighing vaccination because all their attempts to prevent cholera from spreading further have failed.
“We have initiated efforts to bring cholera vaccines,” Dr Bhim Acharya, director at the EDCD, said. He informed that the EDCD is in talks with different aid agencies, including International Vaccine Institute (IVI), for the supply of vaccines and that the latter has given a positive response.
According to Dr Acharya, so far 90 people have tested positive for cholera.
The disease has been spreading in Balkumari, Jawalakhel, Dhapakhel, Thaiba, Harisiddhi, Godawori, Mangalbazar and in other areas of the district.
At present, over 2,500 diarrheal patients are receiving treatment at various hospitals in the capital.
Director Acharya informed that the cholera vaccine will be administered en masse in the disease hit areas. The last time EDCD launched a large scale immunization against cholera was in Rautahat district some two years ago, when several people died and hundreds got infected.
The EDCD and the district Public Health Office (DPHO), Lalitpur has been making people aware about the disease and the precautionary measures through a door-to-door campaign and mass media like local radio and television.
“We are trying our best to control the epidemic,” Dr Gunanidhi Sharma, chief of the epidemiology section at the EDCD, said, adding that despite their serious efforts the disease has remained out of control.
The doctors have said 01 Ogawa stereotype of cholera have been detected in most of the diarrheal patients.
The EDCD has been collecting drinking water samples from areas where diarrheal outbreaks have been reported.
Earlier, E.coli and coliform bacteria have been detected in some samples collected from the disease-hit areas.
Doctors say that people in the Kathmandu Valley are at high risks of cholera infection as valley residents are compelled to drink polluted water.