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Through July 25, 2017, the number of suspected cholera cases reported in the Yemen epidemic has surpassed 400,000 since April, 27, 2017.

Image/UNICEF Yemen Twitter (cropped)
Image/UNICEF Yemen Twitter (cropped)

In three months, 402,484 suspected cholera cases and 1,880 deaths (CFR: 0.5%) have been reported in 91.3% (21/23) of Yemen governorates, and 88.9% (296/333) of the districts.

UNICEF Executive Director, Anthony Lake, WFP Executive Director, David Beasley and WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus released a joint statement on the situation following a recent visit to the country. Here are some excerpts:

“This is the world’s worst cholera outbreak in the midst of the world’s largest humanitarian crisis. Vital health, water and sanitation facilities have been crippled by more than 2 years of hostilities, and created the ideal conditions for diseases to spread.

LISTEN: Cholera: The disease, the Yemen crisis and the vaccine

“The country is on the brink of famine, with over 60 per cent of the population not knowing where their next meal will come from. Nearly 2 million Yemeni children are acutely malnourished. Malnutrition makes them more susceptible to cholera; diseases create more malnutrition. A vicious combination.

“Amid this chaos, some 16 000 community volunteers go house to house, providing families with information on how to protect themselves from diarrhea and cholera. Doctors, nurses and other essential health staff are working around the clock to save lives.

“The situation remains dire. Thousands are falling sick every day. Sustained efforts are required to stop the spread of disease. Nearly 80 percent of Yemen’s children need immediate humanitarian assistance.

“The Yemeni crisis requires an unprecedented response.

“We now call on the international community to redouble its support for the people of Yemen. If we fail to do so, the catastrophe we have seen unfolding before our eyes will not only continue to claim lives but will scar future generations and the country for years to come.”

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