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Malawi schools reopen after deadly cholera outbreak

A woman dilutes chlorine as other women wait to receive the concentrate to protect their households from cholera outbreak on January 27, 2018   -  
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AMOS GUMULIRA/AFP or licensors


Tuesday marks the return of classes to primary and secondary schools in Malawi's two largest cities following a cholera outbreak that claimed hundreds of lives.

After the Christmas break, schools in the capital, Lilongwe, and the business district, Blantyre, had been closed for at least two weeks.

Over 750 individuals have already died as a result of the cholera outbreak, which started in March of last year.

Both Lilongwe and Blantyre still have significant infection rates.

Health Minister Khumbize Chiponda said schools now have access to safe water and improved sanitation facilities, which will go a long way in reducing infections reported in schools.

The minister was optimistic that infections in schools would reduce due to improved sanitation facilities.

Malawi is among 31 countries globally hardest hit by cholera.

Last week, the government asked for international assistance as it was running low on medical supplies.

The country has seen a large number of instances of cholera as a result of the aftermath of tropical storm Ana and cyclone Gombe, which last year caused severe floods and devastated the water and sanitation infrastructure of the nation.

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