Madagascar: WHO to fight plague, provides 1.2 million doses of antibiotics

World Health Organisation, WHO, has provided 1.2 million doses of antibiotics to control plague in Madagascar.

Dr Charlotte Ndiaye, WHO Representative in Madagascar said, “If detected in time, plague is a curable disease. Our teams ensure that all people at risk have access to safeguards and treatment”.

This week, WHO delivered 1,190,000 doses of antibiotics to the Ministry of Health and partners, and an additional 244,000 doses are expected in the coming days.

The different types of medicines will be used for curative and prophylactic purposes. The doses delivered can treat up to 5,000 patients and protect up to 100,000 people who may be exposed to the disease.

Medicines are distributed to health facilities and street clinics throughout the country, with the support of the Ministry of Health and partners.

WHO is also addressing serious shortages of disinfection products and personal protective equipment for health professionals and for safe burials.

WHO and the Ministry of Health teach local health workers to identify and manage patients and to seek out people who have been in close contact with symptomatic patients for treatment protective.

Most of the 231 cases, including 33 deaths, notified by the Ministry of Health since August, are cases of pulmonary plague – a more dangerous form of the disease that affects the lungs and is transmitted in close contact with a person sick coughing.

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Bubonic plague and pulmonary plague are curable if common antibiotics are administered early. Antibiotics can also prevent infection in people who have been exposed to plague.

WHO has released $ 1.5 million (US $) in emergency funds immediately to assist the country immediately until more funding is received.

WHO is calling for $ 5.5 million (US $) to effectively respond to the outbreak and save lives.


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