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‘World’s worst’ cholera outbreak in Yemen



Cholera hits Yeme
Cholera hits Yeme

Yemen is currently plagued with a severe cholera outbreak which UNICEF and the World Health Organisation has described as the worst ever outbreak in the World.

With death toll currently put at over 1,300 and over 200,000 suspected cases, the war torn country grapples with the outbreak as many more are expected to die in the coming days.

However the UN health agency and UNICEF in a statement said it is doing everything to prevent further escalation.

“We are now facing the worst cholera outbreak in the world.

“In just two months, cholera has spread to almost every governorate of this war-torn country with an estimated 5,000 new cases every day.

The spead of the disease is made worse as the country’s health, water and sanitation infrastructure have been on a constant decline following two long years of war.

The war has left 18.8 million of Yemen’s 28 million people needing humanitarian assistance and almost seven million on the brink of famine.

Hospitals have more patients than they can attend to, most of them children while shortage of food has heightened malnutrition and vulnerability among Yemenis.

Meanwhile, the UN has deployed a rapid response team charged with house-to-house sentitisation of Yemenis on preventive measures.

However, water shortages is a major challenge to preventing further sporead of the disease as many Yemenis are now without clean water.

According to WHO, cholera is an acute diarrhoeal disease that can kill within hours if left untreated.

Researchers have estimated that each year there are 1.3 to 4.0 million cases of cholera, and 21 000 to 143 000 deaths worldwide due to cholera1.

Most of those infected will have no or mild symptoms, and can be successfully treated with oral rehydration solution.

Severe cases will need rapid treatment with intravenous fluids and antibiotics.

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