Thursday, October 23, 2008

Latest United Nations Report On Cholera Epidemic - Updated

On October 20, the World Health Organization (WHO) released its latest report on Iraq’s cholera outbreak. It recorded 531 confirmed cases of cholera. That was up from 479 cases on October 14, and 418 on October 5. The first case was reported on August 7, 2008 in Maysan province. Since then it has spread across 37 districts in 12 of Iraq’s 18 provinces. 56% of the cases have been children under five years old, and half of the eight deaths have been from the same age group.

Most of the cases have been in southern Iraq, but it has spread to northern and western provinces as well. After starting in Maysan, that currently has three cases, and one death, it spread to Baghdad that has 78 cases, one under investigation, and one death. On August 28, the first case was detected in Babil, which has 236 confirmed cases, with fifteen under investigation, and three deaths. As reported earlier, Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council members used expired chlorine to clean the water system there, which is responsible for the higher number of victims in that province. In September Karbala (40 cases), Anbar (8 cases), Diyala (one case), Basra (one death, 50 cases), Najaf (16 cases), Diwaniyah (two deaths, 93 cases), and Wasit (2 cases) were hit. The latest instances have been found in Muthanna (2 cases) and Irbil (2 cases). Those numbers still pale in comparison to the 2007 incident in which over 3,000 Iraqis were affected, and fourteen died.

Spread of Cholera In Iraq

  • Maysan 8/7/08 first case, 1 district affected, 1 death, 3 confirmed cases
  • Baghdad – 8/18/08 first case, 10 districts affected, 1 death, 1 under investigation, 78 confirmed cases, 15% of total
  • Babil – 8/28/08 first case, 4 districts affected, 3 deaths, 15 under investigation, 236 confirmed cases, 44% of total
  • Karbala – 9/5/08 first case, 3 districts affected, 3 under investigation, 40 confirmed cases, 8% of total
  • Anbar – 9/7/08 first case, 2 districts affected, 8 confirmed cases
  • Diyala – 9/9/08 first case, 1 district affected, 1 confirmed case
  • Basra – 9/14/08 first case, 5 districts affected, 1 death, 2 under investigation, 50 confirmed cases, 9% of total
  • Najaf – 9/17/08 first case, 3 districts affected, 5 under investigation, 16 confirmed cases
  • Diwaniyah – 9/20/08 first case, 4 districts affected, 2 deaths, 22 under investigation, 93 confirmed cases, 17% of total
  • Wasit – 9/30/08 first case, 1 district affected, 2 confirmed cases
  • Muthanna – 10/7/08 first case, 1 district affected, 2 confirmed cases
  • Irbil – 10/7/08 first case, 2 districts affected, 2 confirmed cases

For more on the cholera outbreak see:

Political Intrigue and the Cholera Outbreak

Latest United Nations Numbers On Cholera Epidemic

Cholera Cases Multiplying

Cholera Outbreak In Iraq

SOURCES

IRIN, “Cholera deaths rise to eight as disease spreads,” 10/15/08
- “Over 400 confirmed cholera cases so far,” 10/6/08
- “Two more cholera cases confirmed,” 9/8/08

World Health Organization, “Situation report on diarrhoea and cholera in Iraq, 20 Oct 2008,” 10/20/08

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