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Outbreak update - Cholera in Yemen, 9 June 2019

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18 June 2019 - The Ministry of Public Health and Population of Yemen reported 17,658 suspected cases of cholera with 11 associated deaths during epidemiological week 23 (3 to 9 June) of 2019, with 18% of cases reported as severe. The cumulative total number of suspected cholera cases from 1 January 2018 to 2 June 2019 is 759,464, with 1163 associated deaths (CFR 0.15%). Children under five represent 22.5% of total suspected cases during 2019. In 2019 the outbreak has affected 22 of 23 governorates and 297 of 333 districts in Yemen.

From week 8 in 2019, the trend of weekly reported suspected cholera cases started increasing and peaked at more than 29,500 cases in week 14. During weeks 15 to 21 case numbers went down and over the past 3 weeks a stable trend was observed. The decline may be attributed to enhanced control efforts such as community engagement and WaSH activities, and scaling up of response by WHO and partners, including establishing of additional DTCs and ORCs.

The governorates reporting the highest number of suspected cases of cholera during 2019 were Amanat Al Asimah (60,793), Sana’a (47,546), Al Hudaydah (40,663), Ibb (36,379), Hajjah (35,271), and Dhamar (34,867).

Of a total 6486 samples tested since January 2019, 3464 have been confirmed as cholera-positive by culture at the central public health laboratories. During this period the governorates reporting the highest numbers of positive culture were Taizz (1953), Aminat al Asimah (1567), and Ibb (647).

WHO continues to provide leadership and support for activities with health authorities and partners to respond to this ongoing cholera outbreak, including case management, surveillance and laboratory investigations, hotspot mapping and OCV campaign planning, water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) and risk communication.