Cholera cases grow in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

The United Nations has reported over 3,000 cases of cholera in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since March and 192 deaths since the disease was first reported there.
The acute intestinal infection, caused by the bacterium vibrio cholerae, was first reported in the northeastern city of Kisangani. It later spread downstream along the Congo River. The World Health Organization and its partners are helping the government to set up water chlorination points, organize hygiene promotion campaigns and to ensure that those infected get free treatment, U.N. spokesperson Martin Nesirky said to reporters at U.N. headquarters.
The disease has spread to the provinces of Bandundu, Equateur and the capital of Kinshasa. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of the Humanitarian Affairs reported that Bandundu is the worst affected province, with 1,271 cases and 72 deaths as of July 4. Cholera has also been spreading quickly in Kinshasa.
Cholera is caused by eating food or drinking water contaminated with the bacterium. The disease produces a toxin that causes water diarrhea, a condition that can lead to severe dehydration, vomiting and death if treatment is not administered promptly.
The disease is a global threat that remains a challenge in countries with limited access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation.