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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Haiti and Nigeria each facing cholera outbreak

Over 1,500 people have died from cholera in Nigeria in 2010, while an estimated 200 plus have perished in Haiti from a cholera outbreak that has escalated these past few weeks. Canada and other countries have recently increased their efforts to help Haiti battle the outbreak, and the University of Miami School of Medicine's emergency response plan for the Haiti cholera outbreak includes ramping up supplies to its 2 medical facilities in the region.

In Nigeria the number of cholera cases so far in 2010 is nearly three times the total for 2009 and seven times that of 2008, according to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). The Red Cross estimates that women and children account for 80 per cent of the 2010 total of over 40,000 (1,500+ fatalities) cases of cholera in Nigeria.

According to the World Health Organization web page about cholera prevention and control, clean water supplies are the number one preventive method, while appropriate treatment during outbreaks can reduce fatalities from 30-50% to under 1%.

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