The FINANCIAL — Kia Motors has joined forces with the Korea-based International Vaccine Institute (IVI) to provide an emergency vaccination program across the Nsanje district of southern Malawi. Kia will support IVI with the necessary funding to provide 110,000 doses of oral cholera vaccine for 50,000 people in the region, which has been hit by devastating floods.
The floods that hit the Nsanje region in January have left 176 people dead and displaced more than 200,000 residents. Malawi President Peter Mutharika declared a state of emergency and has urged the international community to provide assistance, according to Kia Motors.
Amid the situation, a growing number of cholera cases have been reported in camps for IDPs (internally displaced persons) and in the surrounding areas. A total of 329 cases have been confirmed since the outbreak began in February, with half of all cases (157) having been recorded in the fortnight since April 10 alone.
With mounting concern over for the potential for an epidemic, the IVI and World Health Organisation (WHO) have deployed cholera vaccines on an emergency basis to prevent the outbreak from spreading, with Kia Motors supporting the vaccination measures. Earlier cholera epidemics among refugees in Haiti in 2010 and South Sudan in 2013 left more than 10,000 dead. Additionally, Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has also provided emergency disaster assistance to IVI to support its vaccination campaign.