The Ministry of Public Health and Population in Yemen has released the latest figures on cholera cases in the country. Since the last update, 1089 new suspected cases of cholera and 1 additional death have been reported.

Vibrio cholerae/CDC
Vibrio cholerae/CDC

As of 28 December, a cumulative total of 12 733 suspected cases of cholera, including 97 associated deaths have been reported across all affected governorates, with a case–fatality rate of 0.76%. To date, 163 stool samples have tested positive for Vibrio Cholerae 01.

The affected areas include 135 districts in the governorates of Abyan, Aden, Al-Bayda’a, Al-Dhale’a, Al Hudaydah, Al Jawf, Amran, Dhamar, Hajjah, Ta’izz as well as Sana’a City. Recent cases have also been reported for additional districts in Ibb, Lahij, Raymah and Sana’a governorates.

The majority (nearly 60%) of cases and deaths reported so far have been in the governorates of Aden, Ibb, Ta’izz and Al Hudaydah.

The cholera taskforce, led by WHO in partnership with the Ministry, UNICEF, OCHA and other partner organizations, has conducted prevention and intervention efforts to curtail the spread of cholera, although new cases continue to be reported.

WHO has mobilized medical supplies and furniture to rehabilitate treatment centres in Al Hudaydah and Raymah governorates, in addition to treatment centres in Ibb, Hajjah and the Al Sabeen Hospital in Sana’a.

WHO has strengthened the capacity of local health workers through training on case management, infection control, water source chlorination and solid waste disposal and drainage network management. Essential supplies such as rapid diagnostic test kits, IV fluids, oral rehydration solutions and water chlorination tablets have been provided in affected communities. Rapid response teams have been deployed around the country to test and chlorinate water sources.

WHO has also supported social mobilization and health education campaign among citizens to raise their awareness on prevention of cholera and other diarrhoeal diseases.

Acute watery diarrhoeal diseases are endemic in Yemen, however the ongoing conflict has stretched the capacity of the national health systems. More than 7.6 million people, and more than 3 million internally displaced persons currently live in areas affected by the outbreak.