See also:
» 04.03.2010 - Security reforms crucial for Guinea-Bissau, UN report
» 26.01.2010 - UN anti-crime agency help set up police academy in Guinea-Bissau
» 01.10.2008 - Bissau death toll escalates
» 19.09.2008 - Bissau cholera outbreak kills 122
» 21.08.2008 - Bissau cholera out of control
» 18.08.2008 - UN fund Guinea Bissau to fight cholera epidemic
» 20.06.2006 - As rains fall, cholera threat returns
» 09.09.2005 - Cholera causes concern among Guinea-Bissau's neighbours

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Health | Society

EU respond to Guinea-Bissau's cholera epidemic

afrol News, 24 October - Some over 12,000 people in Guinea-Bissau are said to have been hit by latest Cholera epidemic, with 200 already reported dead.

With west African nation grappling with the outbreak European Union (EU) has donated 500,000 euros to Guinea-Bissau to enable it tackle epidemic ravaging the country and said to be exceptionally difficult to control.

According to EU official statement made yesterday, donation will be entrusted to NGO - "Médecin sans Frontières-Spain" - which is already present on the ground.

Statement said money will enable NGO to continue supporting local health centres with a view to dealing decisively with the epidemic.

"In addition to the treatment of the patients, measures such as the disinfection or purification of water, the cleansing and the promotion of hygiene, will be implemented in the high-risk zones to avoid the spread of the disease," statement said.

Apart from EU funding, UN has reported it is already spending $1 million to fight outbreak, further raising concerns that since outbreak started in May this year, it is spreading wildly to all provinces.

UNICEF spokeswoman Veronique Taveau told media that outbreak in west African nation has proven difficult to control.

Ms Taveau said capital of Bissau has more than half of cases, further saying there are fears disease could spread even more with an election campaign peaking and likely to draw large crowds in unhygienic conditions.

Latest donation by EU follows one million euros donated to entire Africa in June with which humanitarian organisations had tackled meningitis, yellow fever and measles.

Heavy rains, lack of basic sanitation and population's stubbornness in not following authorities instructions have been instrumental in increased number of cases of cholera, reports have said.

In 2005 a cholera epidemic in Guinea-Bissau killed 400 people and infected over 4,000 people, in one of the world poorest nations, where majority of people are said to be lacking clean water supply.

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