Published Date: 2011-07-17 13:53:25
Subject: PRO/EAFR> Cholera - Ethiopia: susp.
Archive Number: 20110717.225753
CHOLERA - ETHIOPIA: SUSPECTED
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Fri 15 Jul 2011
Source: Townhall.com, Reuters report [edited]
Millions at risk of cholera in Ethiopia, WHO warns
A total of 5 million people are at risk of cholera in drought-hit
Ethiopia, where acute watery diarrhea has broken out in crowded,
unsanitary conditions, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on
Friday [15 Jul 2011].
Cholera, an acute intestinal infection, causes watery diarrhea that
can quickly lead to severe dehydration and death if treatment is not
promptly given, according to the United Nations agency.
"Overall, 5 million of cholera (in Ethiopia)," WHO spokesman Tarik
Jasarevic said in a note sent to journalists. Ethiopian health
officials have confirmed cases of acute watery diarrhea in the
Somali, Afar and Oromiya regions of Ethiopia, he told Reuters. "It is
not confined to the refugees."
The WHO is delivering emergency health kits to Ethiopia and helping
train health workers in treating malnutrition and in detecting
disease outbreaks, he said. Drought across the Horn of Africa, now
affecting more than 11 million people in Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya
and Somalia, has increased the risk of the spread of infectious
diseases like cholera, the WHO says.
Somalis fleeing severe drought and intensified fighting have been
arriving at the rate of more than 1700 a day in Ethiopia, where 4.5
million people now need assistance, nearly a 50 percent rise since
April , he said.
[Byline: Stephanie Nebehay]
[Cases of acute watery diarrhea have been reported in largely refugee
settings in Ethiopia. Given the rising number of refugees and the
constrained access to adequate water and good sanitation facilities
in these settings, a cholera outbreak is highly likely. It is
therefore critical that laboratory confirmation is undertaken and
efforts should be made by the authorities to improve the living
conditions of the communities in the affected areas.
A map showing the 9 provinces in Ethiopia can be seen at
HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map of the country is available at
http://healthmap.org/r/01bp. - Mod.JFW]