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Biological Health Hazard – Vibrio cholerae Epidemic (Update): Yemen

2017/07/25

Yemen: Cholera epidemic tops 350,000 cases

Cholera outbreak expected to double in Yemen: One in every 45 Yemenis will be affected

Yemen cholera outbreak is now the largest ever in any country in a single year: Oxfam

Political Map of Yemen

Political Map of Yemen. Map based on a UN map. Source: UN Cartographic Section

CHOLERA, DIARRHEA AND DYSENTERY UPDATE (73): ASIA (YEMEN)
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Published Date: 2017-07-24 11:53:51
Subject: PRO/EDR> Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (73): Asia (Yemen)
Archive Number: 20170724.5199977

Date: Fri 21 Jul 2017 8:27 AM
Source: Reuters [edited]

Yemen’s cholera outbreak is far from being controlled and may be further exacerbated by the rainy season, even if the rate of new cases appears to be slowing in some hotspots, the WHO said on Fri 21 Jul 2017.

Oxfam projected the number could rise to more than 600 000 cases, “the largest ever recorded in any country in a single year since records began”, exceeding Haiti in 2011. Nigel Timmins, the charity’s humanitarian director who has just returned from the country, said: “Cholera has spread unchecked in a country already on its knees after 2 years of war and which is teetering on the brink of famine. For many people, weakened by war and hunger, cholera is the knockout blow.”

The WHO reported 368 207 suspected cases and 1828 deaths in the Arabian Peninsula country since late April 2017. “Every day we have 5000 more Yemenis falling sick with symptoms of acute watery diarrhea or cholera,” WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib told a news briefing in Geneva. “Yemen’s cholera outbreak is far from being controlled, the rainy season has just started and may increase the paths of transmission. Sustained efforts are required to stop the spread of this disease,” she said.

Millions are malnourished in Yemen where famine looms, the UN says. A Saudi Arabia-led coalition intervened in Yemen’s civil war in 2015, backing government forces fighting Iran-allied Houthi rebels and fighting limits access for aid workers.

Surveillance data “confirms a slight decline in suspected cases over the past 2 weeks” in some of the most affected governorates — Amanat Al Asimah, Amran, and Sana’a, Chaib said. But great caution was called for as there is a backlog in reporting and data is still being analyzed, she said.

Oxfam, which is based in Britain, said Yemen’s rainy season from July to September would increase the risk of the disease spreading further through water contaminated with faeces. “It is feared that the total number of people infected could eventually rise to over 600 000, making it one of the largest outbreaks since records began in 1949,” Oxfam said.

The WHO did not provide its latest planning figure.

“The fighting is hugely exacerbating the ability to stop this epidemic of cholera. The kind of disintegration of the health system in Yemen as a result of the conflict at a time of cholera is an absolutely lethal combination,” UN human rights spokesman Rupert Colville told Friday’s [21 Jul 2017] briefing.

[Byline: Stephanie Nebehay]

Communicated by:
ProMED-mail
<promed@promedmail.org>

[The statistics of the dreadfully impressive ongoing epidemic in Yemen in 2017 are:

Date (2017) / Cases / Deaths
8 May / 1360 / 25
11 May / 2752 / 51
13 May / 8595 / 115
14 May / 11 000 / 180
17 May / 17 200 / 209
19 May / 23 500 / 242
21 May / 29 300 / 315
22 May / 35 217 / 361
24 May / 42 207 / 420
27 May / 51 832 / 471
30 May / 65 300 / 532
02 Jun / 73 700 / 605
04 Jun / 86 400 / 676
05 Jun / 91 400 / 728
06 Jun / 96 000 / 746
07 Jun / 101 820 / 789
10 Jun / 116 700 / 869
12 Jun / 124 002 / 923
14 Jun / 140 116 / 989
16 Jun / 151 000 / 1054
19 Jun / 166 976 / 1146
21 Jun / 179 548 / 1205
23 Jun / 200 000 / 1310
26 Jun / 219 000 / 1400
28 Jun / 231 364 / 1439
30 Jun / 240 000 / 1500
04 Jul / 275 987 / 1634
07 Jul / 297 438 / 1706
10 Jul / 313 538 / 1732
13 Jul / 332 600 / 1759
17 Jul / 356 591 / 1802
20 Jul / 368 207 / 1828

In the last complete year of data (2015; http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/250142/1/WER9138.pdf), WHO reported a total of 172 454 cases worldwide in 42 countries. This continuing cholera disaster in Yemen is only almost 12 weeks old and is now more than twice the whole of 2015’s total number of cases and more than the peak year of the Haiti outbreak (2011) of 340 311 cases. – Mod.LL

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/126.]

See Also

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Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (48): Asia (Yemen) 20170607.5090736
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (46): Asia (Yemen) 20170606.5088208
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (45): Asia (Yemen) 20170605.5085229
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (44): Asia (Yemen) 20170603.5081754
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (41): Asia (Yemen) 20170531.5074616
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (39): Asia (Yemen) 20170530.5069905
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (38): Asia (Yemen) 20170526.5062038
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (34): Asia (Yemen) 20170523.5057682
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (32): Asia (Yemen) 20170522.5053352
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Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (25): Asia (Yemen) 20170513.5034230
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (23): Asia (Yemen) 20170509.5024479
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (22): Asia 20170508.5018280
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (21): Asia (Yemen) 20170506.5016310
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (13): Asia 20170417.4974438
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (08): Asia (Yemen) 20170308.4887994
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (04): Asia (Yemen) 20170125.4790713
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (01): Asia (Yemen) WHO 20170105.4742075

2016
—-
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (42): Asia (Yemen) 20161218.4707083
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (41): Asia (Yemen) 20161214.4698540
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (40): Asia (Yemen) 20161202.4668224
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (38): Asia (Yemen) 20161108.4615108
Cholera, diarrhea & dysentery update (34): Asia (Yemen) 20161025.4583827
………………………………………….sb/ll/mj/dk

Source:
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases


Note:

Rotavirus is a contagious virus that can cause gastroenteritis (inflammation of the stomach and intestines). Symptoms include severe watery diarrhea, often with vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain. Infants and young children are most likely to get rotavirus disease. They can become severely dehydrated and need to be hospitalized and can even die.

Vibrio cholerae, and Cryptosporidium parvum are several water safety threats classified as potential Category B bioterrorism pathogens that can cause Rotavirus symptoms. These are the second highest priority organisms/biological agents.

Pathogenic organisms and toxins such as these may persist in food and water supplies. Humans are also a source of infection.

Food or waterborne pathogens that may be used as bioterrorism agents:
Salmonella species
Shigella dysenteria
Escherichia coli 0157:H7
Giardia lamblia
Vibrio cholerae
Cryptosporidum species
Campylobacter species

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