The cholera outbreak that was declared by the South Sudan Ministry of Health in collaboration with the World Health Organization three weeks ago in Juba, has blossomed to hundreds of cases and two dozen deaths, according multiple news outlets on Tuesday.
As of May 27, the cholera outbreak has infected 670 people, killing 23, and UN officials fear it could get worse. Abdinasir Abubakar of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said we are at the early stages of the outbreak.
Congested and crowded conditions and heavy rains are hampering aid efforts and potentially exacerbating the spread of the disease. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page.
The UN is moving displaced people to other sites to reduce the risk of an outbreak in the cramped main Tomping base in Juba. The South Sudan Red Cross is mobilizing more than 100 trained volunteers, who are going from house to house in affected areas and informing families about cholera, how they can protect themselves against the disease, and what to do in the event a family member falls sick.
In addition, they are distributing oral rehydration salts to prevent dehydration resulting from diarrhea and vomiting as a result of cholera. Families are also receiving purification tablets and solutions so they can treat their drinking water, and soap to encourage hand washing, according to a International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies news release yesterday.
Cholera is a bacterial disease that can cause diarrhea and dehydration. Cholera is most often spread through contaminated food or water. Water may be contaminated by the feces of an infected person or by untreated sewage. Food may be contaminated by being handled by a person with cholera.