Skip to main content

Somalia: Cholera Outbreak - Apr 2016

Disaster types

Humanitarian partners have stepped up response to the outbreak...Projections of 15,000 severe and 60,000 moderate cases over the coming months have led to plans for a significant and rapid scale up of the response. To help stabilize and contain the outbreak, the CERF rapid response grant of $2 million will strengthen and complement response activities already underway by WASH and Health partners. (OCHA, 30 May 2016)

Since the beginning of [2016], a total of 14165 case of AWD and 497 deaths have been reported in different parts of Somalia. Of these 47.7% are female while 57.9% are children below 5 years. [...] there has been a gradual reduction in number of cases from the peak 1,853 cases and 187 deaths (CFR 10.0%) in week 15 to 194 cases and 0 death in week 46. (WHO, 20 Nov 2016)

Drought conditions have increased the spread of epidemic-prone diseases such as acute watery diarrhoea, cholera and measles. In the first 7 weeks of 2017, more than 6000 cases and 65 deaths by acute watery diarrhoea/ cholera were reported. (WHO, 27 Feb 2017)

The AWD/cholera epidemic in Hiraan, Nugal, Mudug and Bari and Banadir region has been controlled and the cholera treatment centre in Beletweyne has been closed. 2016's outbreak was one of the worst and longest in which the country has experienced in the last five years. (WHO, 5 Mar 2017)

On 15 March 2017, the Government of Somalia, together with humanitarian partners, launched an Oral Cholera Vaccination campaign, the first of its kind in Somalia, targeting over 450,000 people in seven high-risk areas around the country...WASH partners have furthermore scaled up response to AWD/Cholera, reaching 316,000 people in southern and central Somalia through distribution of hygiene kits, chlorination of water points and hygiene promotion campaigns as of end of February. In total, some 568,600 people were assisted with temporary and/or sustainable access to safe water, 36,000 people with safe sanitation and 498,000 people with hygiene promotion activities. (OCHA, 24 Mar 2017)

In 2017, a total of 53,015 AWD/Cholera cases have been reported across 52 districts in 16 regions, including 795 deaths (CFR 1.5 per cent). This represents the worst case scenario with an attack rate (AR) of 5.5 per 1,000 people. 41 per cent of the cases are among children below five years with a slightly higher CFR (1.8%) compared to children above five years (1.4 per cent). The number of AWD/Cholera cases in 2017 is more than three times the 2016 caseload, and 10 times the 2015 caseload. Whilst the cumulative CFR is declining from 2.3 per cent at the beginning of the outbreak to 1.5 per cent as of last week, the reported CFR from inaccessible areas is still four times higher. (UNICEF, 30 Jun 2017)

The month of August has seen a sustained decline in the number of cases of cholera reported from across Somalia. The 917 cases recorded in August 2017 now approximate to the averaged monthly figures recorded in 2015 of 440 cases and during 2016 of 1,300 cases/month. (Health Cluster, 29 Sep 2017)

Over the past two months there has been a significant reduction in the number of new AWD/Cholera cases in all regions of Somalia. No AWD/cholera related deaths have been reported since August in any region across Somalia. (Health Cluster, 31 Oct 2017)

Cholera cases and deaths have declined significantly during the month of November 2017 with less districts reporting cases as compared to previous months. (WHO, 30 Nov 2017)

Since the start of the year, a total of 78,560 cumulative cases of AWD/cholera recorded from health facilities across the country and 1,160 deaths have been reported in 55 districts of 16 regions across Somalia. [...] Whilst an overall decline is being reported, new AWD/cholera cases have been reported from Beletweyne district of Hiran region during December. (Health Cluster, 31 Dec 2017)

As of 18 March 2018, a total of 1613 cholera cases, including nine deaths (case fatality rate = 0.6%), have been reported from four regions: Hiraan, Banadir, Lower Juba and Middle Shabelle. The outbreak started in Beletweyne, Hiraan Region; it spread to Banadir Region in early January 2018, to Lower Juba in early February 2018, and to Middle Shabelle in early February 2018... Banadir Region is one of the regions with the highest concentration of internally displaced persons (IDPs). (WHO, 29 Mar 2018)

Following the heavy rains that have led to the floods in the Juba land and Shabelle basins, there has been an observed increase in the number of new AWD/Cholera cases. The cholera outbreak that started in December 2017 in Beletweyne along river Shabelle has spread to Jowhar, Kismayo, Afgoye and Banadir. The cholera spread is expected to increase due to the floods that have led to contamination of water sources in the flood affected regions. Floods have also led to blockage of access of health services which will contribute to delayed health seeking by the affected populations with... A cumulative total of 3,280 cases including 21 deaths have been reported since December 2017. (WHO, 13 May 2018)

The cholera spread is expected to increase due to the floods that have led to contamination of water sources in the flood affected regions...Over the past 2 weeks, there has been decrease in the number of AWD/Cholera cases reported in Lower Shabelle, Banadir and Lower Jubba; the regions that are affected by floods. In week ending 8th July, active transmission of AWD/cholera was reported in Kismayo district in Lower Jubba, Afgoye Kurtunwarey, Brava and Merka in Lower Shabelle as well as in 14 districts of Banadir region (Darkenly, Daynile, Hodan, Madina, Waberi, HamarWeine, Hamarjabjab, Wardhigley, Shibis,Yaqshid, Abdiaziz, Kaaran, Huruwa, and Howlwadag districts). In Kismayo, affected communities especially in Farjano IDP are reportedly using contaminated water due to floods. There was a decrease in the number of cases reported from 344 in week 26 to 151 in week 27. (WHO/Gov't, 8 Jul 2018)

The Ministry of Health of Somalia has announced 30 new cases of cholera and no deaths for week 38 (17 to 23 September) of 2018. Since week 28, there has been a decreasing trend in the number of cholera cases reported. The cumulative total of cases is 6394, including 42 associated deaths (case-fatality rate 0.7%) since the beginning of the current outbreak in December 2017...Over the past five weeks, there has been a decrease in the number of cases reported in Banadir and Lower Jubba, while during week 38 active transmission was reported in Kismayo district of Lower Jubba, and 7 districts of Banadir region (Darkenly, Daynile, Hodan, Madina, Waberi, Hamarjabjab, and Heliwa districts). (WHO, 4 Oct 2018)

There has been a consecutive weekly downward trend of suspected cases reported since week 28. The peak was 296 cases in epidemiological week 23, dropping to 18 cases in this reporting period. In week 45, active transmission of Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD)/cholera was reported in six districts in the Banadir region: Darkenley, Daynile, Hodan, Madina, Shibis, and Yaqsid. All cases reported this week are among the internally displaced people (IDPs). None of the reported cases had previously received the oral cholera vaccine (OCV). OCV campaigns have contributed significantly to the reduction of reported cases in the country. (WHO, 07 Dec 2018)

The Ministry of Health of Somalia has announced 32 new suspected cases of cholera (last week: 18 cases), with no deaths, for epidemiological week 48 (26 November to 2 December) of 2018. Of these new cases, 38% (12) are females while 69% (22) are children below five years of age. The cumulative total of cases is 6637, including 45 associated deaths (case-fatality rate 0.7%), since the beginning of the current outbreak in December 2017. Of the 334 stool samples collected since the beginning of the year, 103 tested positive for Vibrio cholerae. (WHO, 12 Dec 2018)