UNICEF sending urgent supplies to women and children affected by Cameroon’s worst cholera outbreak in six years

UNICEF has joined WHO, UNFPA, WFP and UNHCR in sending urgently needed supplies to thousands of people affected by Cameroon’s worst outbreak of cholera since 2004, but remains deeply concerned about the plight of women and children in the area.

The current outbreak, which started in May 2010 in the Extreme North region of Cameroon and has subsequently spread to the neighboring North region, has to-date caused over 2,199 confirmed cases of cholera resulting in 163 deaths. This constitutes a high fatality rate of 7.41 per cent.

Characterised by a limited availability of clean water and proper sanitation, the Extreme North and North regions of Cameroon comprise an estimated population of over 5 million people, and share borders with Nigeria, Chad and the Central African Republic. In addition, parts of the Extreme North region have suffered extensive flooding over the past month, leaving many communities increasingly vulnerable to disease. UNICEF is concerned that any further spread of the outbreak could have serious consequences for women and children across the sub-region.

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