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World Health Organisation confirms global resurgence of cholera, records 1,900 deaths

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has confirmed a resurgence of cholera cases across countries in Africa, East Asia, America, Europe, and the Eastern Mediterranean region, an outbreak classified as “a grade 3 emergency.”

Penpushing reports the organization made this known in a bulletin, adding that the United Nations Agency, has it that about 195,00 cholera cases have been reported in the five regions between January and May, with the Eastern Mediterranean Region reporting the highest number of cases of more than 98,000 cases from seven countries.

The World Health Organisation(WHO) explained that this data combines both suspected and confirmed cases of the disease, adding that in South-East Asia, about 1,400 cases have been reported from two countries, and in Europe, 105 cases from one country, with America recording 13 deaths, South-East Asia has four deaths, and Europe has reported only one death.

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Penpushing further reports that the bulleting added that there were no reported cases in the Western Pacific Region’, explaining that in May, the most recent data available, about 46,364 new cholera cases were reported from 19 countries across these regions.

The World Health Organisation(WHO) pointed out that it was a 58 per cent increase from what was obtainable in the previous month, stating that the highest number of fatalities was recorded in Africa, with 130 deaths from 10 countries

‘Africa has the second-highest cases, with 92,789 cases from 14 countries. A distant margin from what was found in America, where about 3700 cases from one country were recorded as the third highest from an affected region. The highest number of fatalities was recorded in Africa, with 130 deaths from 10 countries.

Penpushing also reports that the bulletin said the highest number of deaths was reported from Comoros, which had 54 deaths; Ethiopia, with 28 deaths; the Democratic Republic of the Congo, with 18; Zimbabwe, with 12 death cases; and the United Republic of Tanzania, with ten death cases, stressing that these countries have also reported the region’s highest number of cholera infections within the past five months.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) in the bulletin did not mentioned Nigeria and compared to the countries listed by the world body she has reported a significantly lower number of infections, especially within the period in review.

Penpushing reports that that the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC recently, stated that the country has been experiencing a spike in the number of recorded cases having recorded 65 confirmed cases of Cholera, with 30 deaths from January 1 to 11 June across 96 local governments in 30 states.

The Health World body, however, said the stock of Oral Cholera Vaccine (OCV) is significantly limited and that demand for the vaccine continues to outpace supply, noting between January and May 2024, the vaccine stockpile was entirely depleted.

“Since January 2023, 92 million OCV doses were requested by 16 countries, nearly double the 49 million doses produced during this period. Insufficient cholera vaccine stocks to respond to all concurrent cholera outbreaks, resulting in the suspension of preventive campaigns and a transition from a two-dose to a one-dose strategy.”

“Based on the number of outbreaks and their geographic expansion, alongside the shortage of vaccines and other resources, WHO continues to assess the risk at the global level as very high, and the event remains classified as a grade 3 emergency,” it added.

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