President Jacob Zuma was thronged during a walkabout in Marabastad‚ west of Pretoria‚ on Monday. .
“There was a diarrhoea outbreak at that particular home. We suspect it to be Shigella,” Gauteng department of health spokesman Simon Zwane said.
Shigella is a bacteria that can cause sudden and severe diarrhea (gastroenteritis) in humans.
Three residents of the Paul Jungnickel Home in Lynnwood Pretoria have died since March, he said.
The facility houses over 140 physically and mentally impaired residents. “The situation is under control. There have not been any new incidents since last week,” Zwane said.
Samples had been taken for testing to confirm the cause of death in the three residents.
“At this stage it can not be confirmed that all the people died of the same causes.”
Director of Kungwini Welfare Organisation, which the facility falls under, Thea du Bruyn, confirmed the deaths, but could not go into further details on the matter.
“(The outbreak) is under control. It’s much better.”