One billion poor people at risk of contracting cholera, “there is a pandemic killing the poor”
by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – The United Nations on Friday issued an urgent call to member states to step up out of their inertia and take immediate action against outbreaks of cholera that are putting 1 billion poor people in over 40 countries at risk of being killed by the deadly disease, i24News reports.
Warning of a “cholera catastrophe,” the UN has said it knows precisely how to fight the killer disease, but it needs $640 million to do so, i24News reports. Cholera is contracted through ingesting bacteria in contaminated food or water and can kill within hours. However, it can be easily prevented and treated with rehydration and antibiotics.
“WHO estimates that a billion people across 43 countries are at risk of cholera,” Henry Gray, the UN health agency’s incident manager for the global cholera response, said in a statement. Gray blamed world conflicts, poverty, and climate change for making food and water sources unsafe.
Twenty-four countries have reported cholera outbreaks so far this year, compared to 15 this time last year, i24News said. Moreover, countries that are not usually affected have reported outbreaks and death rates have far higher than the typical one in 100.
“There is a pandemic killing the poor right in front of us, and we know exactly how to stop it, but we need more support and less inertia from the global community,” Jerome Pfaffmann Zambruni, the head of UNICEF’s public health emergency unit, said in a statement.
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