‘Unprecedented’ cholera outbreak could reach 1 million in Yemen

(CNN)The number of cholera cases in Yemen could reach 1 million by the end of this year, according to the International Red Cross.

Alexandre Faite, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross delegation in Yemen, described the scale of the outbreak as “unprecedented” on Friday.
Faite said the number of suspected cases there stands at about 750,000 — up from almost 276,000 as of July 5.

He added that “given this trend, we could reach up to 1 million by the end of the year.”
Cholera is an acute diarrheal illness that kills thousands of people worldwide each year. Infections are contracted by consuming food or water contaminated with the fecal bacteria Vibrio cholerae.

In July, the World Health Organization described the outbreak in Yemen as “the worst cholera outbreak in the world.”
A ravaged health care system, devastated infrastructure and near famine — the results of a bloody civil war that began in March 2015 — have all contributed to the spread of the disease.
As of September 13, there were 2,074 known deaths from cholera across the country, according to the WHO, with previous reports estimating that 5,000 people were being infected each day.
SOURCE: CNN

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