Outbreak update - Cholera in Yemen, 29 September 2019

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The Ministry of Public Health and Population of Yemen reported 16 625 suspected cases and 15 associated deaths during epidemiological week 39 (23 – 29 September) of 2019. Thirteen percent of cases were severe. The cumulative total number of suspected cholera cases from 1 January 2018 to 1 September 2019 is 1 067 863, with 1418 associated deaths (CFR 0.13%). Children under five represent 25% of total suspected cases during 2019. The outbreak has affected 22 of 23 governorates and 305 of 333 districts in Yemen.

From week 8 in 2019, the trend of weekly reported suspected cholera cases started increasing and reached more than 29 500 cases by week 14. These were the maximum number of cases reported so far. The trend of suspected cases has been fluctuating over the past weeks. From week 37 to week 39 the trend of suspected cases has been decreasing at the country level.

The governorates reporting the highest number of suspected cases of cholera during 2019 were Al Hudaydah (104 169), Amanat Al Asimah (94 985), Sana’a (86 278), Hajjah (64 886), Dhamar (57 076), Ibb (62 905) and Amran (43 649).

Of a total of 96 280 samples tested since January 2019, 4704 have been confirmed as cholera-positive by culture at the central public health laboratories. During this reporting period the governorates reported the highest number of positive culture were Taizz (1136), Amanat Al Asimah (1267) and Sana’a (446).

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 oral cholera vaccine (OCV) campaign planning, water, sanitation and hygiene (WaSH) and risk communication.