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Outbreak update – cholera in Somalia, 8 February 2018

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8 February 2018 - The Ministry of Health of Somalia has recorded 66 new cases of AWD/cholera, with no associated mortality during week 4 (22 – 28 January). The cumulative total of suspected cholera cases stands at 334 cases, including 1 death (case fatality rate: 0.3%).

The current outbreak of cholera has been reported solely in Banadir and Hiran regions. Of the 66 newly reported cases, 17 were reported from Beledweyne in Hiran region, while 49 new cases were reported from 12 districts in Banadir region.  Although cholera immunization programs have been conducted in some part of these regions in 2017, 96% of cases are for those who had not received the oral cholera vaccine.

WHO is coordinating the planning and implementation of response activities with the Ministry of Health, WASH and Health cluster partners, and local medical centres. This includes case management, surveillance, training of rapid response teams, community health workers, providing support for cholera treatment centres, provision of medical supplies, health education for affected communities, and distribution of hygiene kits.

Somalia experienced a major cholera outbreak in 2017 with 79 172 reported cases and 1159 associated deaths. The main contributing factor was severe drought brought on by 3 consecutive seasons of poor rainfall, and the drying up of Somalia’s main rivers – the Shebelle and Jubba – which affected communities along the rivers, causing loss of crops and livestock, food and water shortage, and internal displacement of population.

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