Pakistan has 99 cholera cases in flood-hit areas: WHO

Last Updated: Tue, Oct 26, 2010 03:46 hrs

Geneva: Three flood-affected provinces of Pakistan are reporting 99 cases of cholera, and the country was also seeing an increase in other diseases, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday.

The Pakistani health ministry notified WHO on Oct 12 of the cholera cases, after the disease was confirmed in laboratory. No reason was given for the delay in publication.

The samples for testing were all collected for the laboratory before Sep 30 from Sindh, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces.

Health authorities were acting to prevent outbreaks of diseases and treat those in need of medical assistance, the WHO said in a statement.

Cholera, a bacterial infection transmitted through contaminated water or food, generally causes diarrhoea and vomiting, which can quickly lead to severe and sometimes fatal dehydration.

The WHO also reported a surge in cases of dengue fever and new incidents of a tick-borne viral disease known as Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever (CCHF).

Both are endemic to Pakistan, but recently transmissions have 'intensified in the country with increased incidence and geographic expansion', WHO announced.

Floods, which displaced some 20 million people during the summer, many of whom have yet to return home, may have contributed to the increase.