Cholera outbreak in Guinea worsens

August 9, 2012

An outbreak of cholera in Guinea has killed 60 people since February and is showing no signs of letting up, the country's health ministry said Thursday.

Officials have registered 2,054 cases, with the capital Conakry and the south-western city of Forecariah worst affected.

Thirteen people have died in Conakry and 23 in Forecariah.

The NGO Doctors Without Borders said in a statement it had increased the number of hospital beds to "soon reach 600 to prepare for the height of the outbreak".

Two other organisations, Unicef and Action Against Hunger, have donated hygiene kits containing soap and chlorine to purify water.

Guinean are also running local awareness campaigns in a bid to stem the outbreak.

Poor water and sanitation systems give rise to the disease, an acute intestinal infection caused by ingesting and water which causes acute diarrhoea and vomiting and can kill in hours, according to the .

Sierra Leone, Mali and Niger have also been hard hit, with high levels of malnourishment as a result of a drought exacerbating the problem.

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