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South Sudan: Cholera Outbreak - Jul 2016

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South Sudan’s Minister of Health advised partners to treat the recent rise in suspected cholera cases as a cholera outbreak, and respond accordingly. UNICEF’s Cholera Task Force is fully operational, and measures are being taken to enhance water, sanitation, and hygiene – over 100,000 liters of sewage were collected from UN House POC on 18 July. (UNICEF, 18 Jul 2016)

As of 17 November, communities along the River Nile are worst affected and account for 91 per cent of reported cholera cases. A total of 2,874 cases and all 44 deaths from the outbreak have been reported from eight counties straddling the River Nile: Awerial, Duk, Fangak, Juba, Leer, Pageri, Pigi and Terekeka. Rubkona is the only county affected by the outbreak that is not along the Nile. Juba has the highest number of cases (1,990 - 63 per cent of the total), while Terekeka has the highest case fatality rate. (OCHA, 21 Nov 2016)

As of 5 May 2017, cholera outbreaks have been confirmed in 19 counties in South Sudan. The most affected counties are located along the River Nile. This suggests vehicle-borne transmission from contaminated water in affected counties. Cumulatively, 7,735 cholera cases, including 246 deaths (76 facilities and 170 community) (CFR 3.23%), have been reported in South Sudan since the initial case was reported on 18 June 2016. Nine out of 19 counties ever affected since June 2016 are considered to have active transmission, having reported cholera cases in the past four weeks. (WHO, Govt. South Sudan, 5 May 2017)

Cholera transmission has continued to decline countrywide. In the last four weeks [weeks 37- 40] , cholera cases dropped from at least 40 cases in week 37 of 2017 to at least 15 cases in week 40 of 2017. Three counties [Juba, Budi, and Fangak] have registered cholera transmission in the last four weeks [ 37-40]. A total of 135 cases have been reported from the three counties in the last four weeks [37-40]. Most of the cases have been reported from Juba [112 cases] while Budi and Fangak reported 16 cases and 7 cases respectively. (WHO, 6 Oct 2017)

As part of the ongoing cholera response, health partners have deployed cholera vaccines to complement traditional prevention strategies in several high-risk populations and locations. This is the latest step in ongoing efforts to end South Sudan’s longest and deadliest cholera outbreak (OCHA, 18 Jan 2018.)

South Sudan declared the end of its longest and largest cholera outbreak on Wednesday (February 07), with no new cases of cholera reported in over seven weeks. (WHO, 7 Feb 2018.)