SUNDAY, JUNE 24, 2018

Venezuela confirms 35 cases of cholera

With 35 cases of cholera confirmed in Venezuela, neighboring countries have increased hygiene and sanitation measures at their ports and airports while others have increased their border vigilance.

Additionally, according to local media in Venezuela, Colombia and Panama, Medical News Today reports, there have been between 12 reported cholera cases in the Dominican Republic and one in Mexico.

Panamanian Health Minister Franklin Vergara has emphasized that there is not yet a cause for alarm as the country has been "careful and vigilant" since the Haitian cholera outbreak in October 2010, Medical News Today reports.

"Sanitation measures must be adopted to the full," Vergara said, according to Medical News Today.

Vergara said that Panama is a popular hub for passengers in transit, which is why it is the perfect place for infection to spread if authorities do not enforce health standards.

Beatriz Londoño, the Colombian Health and Wellness Deputy Minister, told reports that even though cholera has not yet occurred in the country, authorities have heightened alertness on the border with Venezuela.

"(Authorities must) intensify all vigilance and control measures, inform communities about effective preventive measures, and to report any suspect cases immediately," Londoño said, according to Medical News Today.

Colombia has also had preventive measures in effect since the Haiti cholera outbreak in October 2010, spending $1.6 million to prevent cholera from entering the country since then.